In a setback to the state government, the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court on Thursday ordered a stay on the ambitious IT City project at Chak Ganjaria farm on Sultanpur Road till further orders. Justice Uma Nath Singh and justice Satish Chandra passed the order on a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a local lawyer. The court has retrained the state government from relocating the farm, its livestock and felling of trees till further orders.
In his petition, lawyer Prince Lenin of the NGO ‘We The People’ had alleged that in the name of development of IT City, colonies etc, the state was bringing projects for raising construction over the land used for environmental protection. This act of the government, he said, would disturb the ecological balance, as a large number of trees and shrubs would have to be cut down to pave way for the project.
The petitioner has claimed that the Chak Ganjaria farm is spread over an area of 992 acres of land, which is used for natural habitation of protected species, such as peacock, deer, jackal, parrots, sparrow etc. It is also an important collection centre for bull sperm being used for improving the breeds of cows and bulls. Besides, it also houses a poultry farm.
While restraining the government from proceeding on the project, the bench has given it a week’s time to file a counter affidavit in the matter. On Monday, the state cabinet chaired by chief minister AkhileshYadav, had cleared the proposal to relocate existing activities at Chak Ganjaria farm to some other place and allow the existing land to be used for housing and commercial purposes. The matter would come up for hearing on April 19.