HC summons 3 collectors for false info on wetland cover
The Bombay high court (HC) on Wednesday summoned the collectors of Nagpur, Nandurbar and Parbhani districts after noticing that they had falsely stated that there were no wetlands in these districts.
A bench of justices SJ Kathawalla and BP Colabawalla has asked the collectors to be present in the HC next Wednesday with their personal affidavits explaining why they gave false information about wetlands.
Two weeks ago, a deputy secretary in the environment department had informed the HC that there were no wetlands in Nagpur, Nandurbar and Parbhani districts, on the basis of information received from these collectors. The judges, however, were annoyed when they noticed that a new affidavit filed by the department on Wednesday disclosed that there were 561 wetlands in Nagpur, 164 in Nandurbar and 78 in Parbhani.
The affidavit was filed in response to a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Vanashakti Public Trust, raising grievance over lack of action against builders who were illegally reclaiming land and carrying out construction after dumping debris on wetlands and mangrove areas, in violation of the Environment Protection Act, 1986.