Uttarakhand pollution control board seeks ₹27 lakh relief for Auli wedding
The Uttarakhand state pollution control board has furnished a claim of ₹27 lakh as environment compensation for restoring the area in Auli, Chamoli district where the high profile wedding of the two sons of South Africa based Gupta brothers took place in June this year.
Aditya Pratap Singh, counsel of the state pollution control board in the PIL related to Auli wedding, said that they have submitted the claim of ₹27 lakh before the HC recently.
Singh said the court during the hearing on August 27 directed the State Pollution Control Board to apprise it about the steps required to be taken for the utilisation of environmental compensation of around ₹27 lakhs for improving the ecology of Auli.
“We will have to submit an affidavit before the court by September 11,the next day of hearing in the case on how we plan to utilise this amount and then accordingly put the claim before the district administration Chamoli where ₹3 crore has been deposited by the Gupta brothers”, he said.
The HC also ruled that several measures suggested by GB Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development Almora in its affidavit, necessitate examination by the State Pollution Control Board, including the steps required to be taken for utilisation of environmental compensation of around ₹27 lakh.
“The State Pollution Control Board shall examine the measures suggested by the 19th respondent (GB Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development Almora), and shall file an affidavit by the next date of hearing regarding the steps required to be taken to restore, to the extent possible, the subject area to its pre-event position; and regarding the manner in which the environmental compensation amount, determined by them, should be utilised”, HC’s August 27 order said.
The HC also ruled that “before we direct the State Pollution Control Board to utilise the environmental compensation amount determined by them, it is but appropriate that respondent number 12 to 14 (Gupta brothers and event management company ) are given an opportunity to put forth their objections, if any, thereto. “Objections, if any, to the utilisation of the environmental compensation amount shall be filed by respondent number 12 to 14 within two weeks”.
On July 10, the district magistrate of Chamoli submitted the report to HC regarding the impact of the wedding on the environment and what was done to ensure the wedding didn’t affect the local ecology. According to the report submitted by the magistrate and state pollution control board to Uttarakhand high court, overall from June 13 to June 30, over 326 quintal waste was collected from the marriage venue in Auli including 154 quintal inorganic solid and 172 quintal organic waste.