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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Dec 2014

SC to hear Ram Setu project on April 29

PTI  New Delhi, April 15, 2008
First Published: 12:03 IST(15/4/2008) | Last Updated: 09:17 IST(16/4/2008)

 The Supreme Court on Tuesday posted for April 29 the hearing on the Centre's plea to go ahead with the Sethusamudram project.

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The Centre had on February 29 filed a fresh affidavit in the apex court seeking clearance to go ahead with the Sethusamudram project on the same alignment saying issues of faith cannot be resolved through scientific evidence.

The 60-page affidavit cleared by the Cabinet Committee of Political Affairs (CCPA), which was chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, had said that the opposition to the project which started two years back was "misconceived" and "unsubstantiated" and the court should "refrain from interdicting".

The Centre had said that a committee of eminent persons appointed on October 5, 2007 re-examined the entire project, including the six possible alignments to conclude that the alignment No-6 (Rama Setu) was the "best alternative" and to alter channel alignment at this stage would be "infeasible" as it would lead to huge loses to the public exchequer.

"The alignment No-6 (Rama Setu) is backed by sound environmental, navigational, engineering and trans-boundary considerations.

"Therefore, the assertion that the alignment has been arbitrarily resorted to and other viable alternatives have been deliberately left out for malafide reasons is wrong and baseless," the affidavit said seeking vacation of apex court's interim orders directing not to damage the 'Rama Setu'.

The Ministry of Culture had triggered a controversy last September by questioning the existence of Lord Rama and a man-made Rama Setu' in an affidavit which was later withdrawn after a huge public outcry.


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