Four days after the Supreme Court stayed the National Green Tribunal (NGT) order mandating environment clearance for Delhi Metro and railways projects, the Noida Metro Rail Corporation (NMRC) on Tuesday said it will go ahead with the process of getting environment nod from the state agency.
The tribunal had on July 5 directed the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) and Indian Railways to obtain environment clearances for the Noida project. However, the tribunal had not ordered a stay on the important infrastructure projects.
The DMRC and Indian Railways had challenged the NGT order in the Supreme Court.
“The Supreme court has issued an interim order on the issue of obtaining environmental clearance. Since the order is not final, the NMRC will continue with the process of obtaining environment clearance,” said VK Jain, deputy general manager of the NMRC.
On September 9, 2016 the NMRC selected a private consultant to help it obtain environment clearances from the Uttar Pradesh state environment impact assessment authority (SEIAA).
The consultant, EQMS India Pvt Ltd, will work according to the norms of the gazette notification of the authority to obtain the required clearances, officials said.
“The private agency will continue with the preparation of the detailed project report needed to obtain the environment clearance. It will continue with the work because the Supreme Court has issued an interim order. If in the future, the Supreme Court stay is vacated, the process of obtaining the clearance will get delayed,” said an NMRC official.
In accordance with the NGT order, the SEIAA has directed the NMRC to take steps to ensure that the project does not cause pollution. The steps include installation of sound barriers, rainwater harvesting and tree plantation.
The Delhi Metro had in August 2015 started work on the 30-km Noida-Greater Noida project without obtaining environment clearances.
If all goes well, the line is expected to get operational in March 2018.
To control pollution, the NMRC plans to take steps such as building 576 water harvesting pits, plant 17,485 saplings and installing noise barriers along the under-construction line.