Centre to study if Noida park will harm ecology
The Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Centre to examine the likely adverse impact of felling of 6,000 trees and large-scale construction at Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar Park, Noida, where statues of UP Chief Minister Mayawati and her mentor late Kanshiram were to be installed.delhi Updated: Apr 23, 2010 00:14 IST
The Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Centre to examine the likely adverse impact of felling of 6,000 trees and large-scale construction at Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar Park, Noida, where statues of UP Chief Minister Mayawati and her mentor late Kanshiram were to be installed.
A special bench headed by Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan directed the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests (MOEF) to appraise from environmental angle, particularly its impact on the adjoining bird sanctuary, and submit a report in four weeks.
The court asked the MOEF to suggest “necessary environmental safeguard measures” required for minimising the likely adverse impacts.
"At this stage, we are not on the issue whether the land in question is a forest land or not. At present, we need to know only what is the impact of felling of trees and the constructions on the environment and the adjacent bird sanctuary," it said.
The bench, also comprising Justice S H Kapadia and Justice Aftab Alam, did not lift the stay operating since October 9, 2009 on construction work in the park as requested by senior counsel K K Venugopal on behalf of the Uttar Pradesh government. Venugopal said the project did not violate any law.
Terming the park as a public interest project, he emphasised 75 per cent of the work had already been completed and crores of rupees had been spent to develop it in a modern way to ensure that no harm was caused to the environment.
Venugopal wanted the matter to be heard before the summer vacation but the court posted the matter for further hearing in the second week of July.
Senior advocate Harish Salve, who is assisting the court, said irrespective of the fact whether the land in question is forest or not, it has to be seen that the plantation done at tax payers' money at the park could be removed without environmental clearance.
"If tax payers money is used for plantation, what are the principles applied for felling around 6,000 trees?" he said, adding the buffer zone, in which the bird sanctuary falls, cannot be ignored.