Union environment minister Jairam Ramesh has said his ministry will wait for the 15-day period given to Lavasa to reply to the show-cause notice before taking a call on it.
“We have given the show-cause notice because we have come across some violations of the environmental protection and forest conservation Act,” Ramesh told the Hindustan Times after a press conference at Sahyadri on Sunday.
“However, we have given them a 15-day time period to reply to us. We will study their response and only then decide our next course of action,” the Union minister added.
The notice, issued by the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) to the 25,000-acre Lavasa hill city in Pune district on Friday, questioned how the state government could have allowed construction despite laws mandating that large-scale projects
should get a nod from the Centre. ‘
The notice said an MoEF letter in 2005 had reminded the state that the project came under the Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) amendment of 2004 and should get central clearance.
Following the notice, Lavasa Corporation immediately stopped all work at the hill city in Mose valley immediately.
Ramesh said the MoEF was not working in favour of or against anyone.
“We have got information that laws have been violated and it is our duty to initiate action,” he said.
On Saturday, Lavasa corporation shared with the media a letter dated October 29 sent to them by the state environment department stating they had relevant environment permissions.