NGT summons Haryana revenue secretary
Taking strong exception to the absence of Haryana government officials, the National Green Tribunal has summoned the state's revenue secretary in a case pertaining to change of land use in Faridabad district which could allegedly lead to fragmentation of the Aravallis.
"We find the absence and non-compliance of the order of the tribunal totally unjustified. Let notice be issued to the secretary, Revenue, State of Haryana to be present personally on the next date of hearing," the bench said.
The tribunal posted the matter for further hearing on December 10.
The plea was filed by Colonel Sarvadaman Singh Oberoi seeking stay on change of land use from 'gair mumkin pahar' (non-cultivable land) to agriculture land by changing 'girdavari' (record) of land in the village of Mangar in Faridabad district.
The court had earlier stayed the attempts of three companies to change the land use pattern in parts of Mangar Bani, a grove off the Gurgaon-Faridabad highway.
The tribunal's direction came over a petition seeking a stay on the attempts by companies --Kenwood Mercantile, Goodfaith Builders Pvt Ltd and Nandak Infocom -- to change the land use pattern.
According to the petitioner, the firms had filed 90 applications with the Haryana revenue department to change use of several patches from 'gair mumkin pahar' to agricultural land.
The plea had sought that any such change be considered "illegal, null and void" as it will lead to fragmentation of the Aravallis.
He also sought that the hilly areas of Mangar village be declared "deemed forest" under Section 2 of Forest Conservation Act and all non-forest activities be barred there.
MoEF and the Haryana government should also commission an independent study, including a tree survey in the forested area, it added.
It has also sought direction to the MoEF and the Forest department, government of Haryana to commission an independent study which includes a tree survey and also photography and videography in the entire 'gair mumkin pahar' area of Mangar village to create an objective and photographic baseline of the tree and undergrowth.
"Direct the Government of Haryana to refrain from changing land type or land use of Aravalli 'gair mumkin pahar' areas in any land records including girdavari," the plea said.