Fate of 23 marriage gardens in Bhopal hangs in the balance

  • Neeraj Santoshi, Hindustan Times, Bhopal
  • Updated: May 16, 2015 20:04 IST

In a bid to help residents of Bhopal who have already booked marriage gardens, the district administration decided to categorise marriage gardens during the survey held on Friday.

The marriage gardens would be categorised into two sections — 1. Those who meet the Ujjain guidelines and environmental norms soon. 2. Those who can’t do it at the earliest.

According to officials, during the survey of district administration and Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC), it was found that seven marriage gardens have obtained permission, eight have been closed in the last few days and a decision on the remaining 23 out of the 38 where guidelines are yet to be implemented will be taken on Saturday, depending on the response of the marriage garden owners.

Authorities are apprehensive that if a substantial number over a hundred marriage gardens are closed, it will create a crisis for people who had pre-booked them.

Ujjain guidelines make it mandatory for marriage gardens to have 25 per cent area reserved for parking, have proper mechanism for disposal of solid and liquid waste, separate toilets for males and females, two main doors, power source like DG sets and so on.

On May 18, the district administration has to submit its report to the National Green Tribunal on 38 marriage gardens against whom closure notices were served earlier in March.

The district administration will request the green tribunal to give some time to the marriage gardens owners so that they could implement the Ujjain guidelines.

Confirming the developments additional district magistrate (ADM) Vikas Mishra said that the survey those marriage gardens which have followed most the Ujjain guidelines or can implement the guidelines if given some time, would be put in one category.

"The other category will be of those marriage gardens that have not followed or can’t implement the guidelines within a short time. In case of the first category, we will request the NGT on Monday to give them more time so that people who have booked marriage gardens don’t have to suffer," he said.

Mishra said that marriage garden owners will have to furnish a bond of Rs 50,000 assuring they will implement the Ujjain guidelines at the earliest.

On Monday, according to the NGT order, district administration will file an affidavit with regard to the status and steps taken by the administration with regard to these 38 marriage gardens that have not been given consents and 28 marriage gardens that were found closed.

On May 7, NGT had directed the district administration to attach properties of 38 marriage gardens against whom closure notices had been served under the Air and Water Act.

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