The Ministry of Environment and Forests on Monday ruled out the possibility of granting post-facto clearance to the controversial Adarsh housing society in Cuffe Parade.
Arguing on behalf of the central ministry, additional solicitor general Darius Khambata told the Bombay high court that only genuine mistakes made by ordinary people could be condoned; in this case, the authorities and regulators had flouted norms deliberately.
“These are not innocent people, these are bureaucrats who knew every notification and exactly what was required to be done,” Khambata said. “This is not a fit case for post-facto sanction.”
He was responding to a petition filed by the housing society, which challenges the ministry’s January 16 order for the demolition of the building. The housing society’s counsel, Mukul Rohatgi, had argued that Adarsh society deserves post-facto sanction, similar to the one given to the Lavasa hill station project.
Khambata refuted the claim and said all other permissions were vitiated for want of environmental clearance.