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Transmission lines near Mumbai Metro-3 car shed plot shifted without permission

National Green Tribunal in Delhi on May 14 restrained authorities from carrying out any debris dumping, reclamation of land and cutting of trees for the Metro-3 car shed till July 10

mumbai Updated: Jun 01, 2018 01:07 IST
Badri Chatterjee
Badri Chatterjee
Hindustan Times
Mumbai Metro,Mumbai,Sanjay Gandhi National Park
MMRC had sought our permission in 2015 to shift our existing 220kV transmission line and its supporting towers located on the land allotted to MMRC for the car depot.(HT FILE)

Transmission lines are being shifted near the 30-hectare plot allotted for Metro-3 (Colaba-Bandra-Seepz) car shed in Aarey Milk Colony without taking the required permissions, an activist has alleged, quoting the response to his RTI query.

In his query, activist Zoru Bathena asked the Metro authorities to give information on construction work being carried out to the west of Aarey Colony road, which is near the plot for the depot. The query also asked Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC) to provide copies of permissions obtained from National Green Tribunal, forest department, Maharashtra Pollution Control Board, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation or state government bodies.

While the MMRC did not provide copies of the permissions, their reply to the query said: “Information as to nature of work being carried out is lowering of 220 kilovolt (kV) and 33 kV overhead lines and shifting of 3 numbers of pylons/towers. The statutory permissions obtained: as required by Reliance Energy Ltd. (The Power Transmission Company).”

The forest department, meanwhile, said they had not approved the work. “As far overhead transmission lines are concerned, we have not issued any permission nor have we got any proposal from MMRC. The area outside the 30-ha metro car shed is close to the eco-sensitive zone of Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) and they should have taken permission before going ahead with the work,” said Jitendra Ramgaokar, deputy conservator of forest, Thane forest range.

Read more: Won’t start any Metro-2B work in Andheri now: MMRCL to Bombay HC

A Reliance Energy spokesperson said, “MMRC had sought our permission in 2015 to shift our existing 220kV transmission line and its supporting towers located on the land allotted to MMRC for the car depot. We have given our in-principle approval on the condition that it will be the responsibility of MMRC to arrange for all applicable approvals from various statutory authorities such as forest department, BMC and others.”

MMRC denied any violation. “MMRC being a responsible organisation carries out all activities legally. There is no violation of the NGT order in ongoing work of pylon shifting and permissible activities are being done,” said a spokesperson.

National Green Tribunal (NGT) in Delhi on May 14 restrained authorities from carrying out any debris dumping, reclamation of land and cutting of trees for the Metro-3 car shed till July 10. “It is shocking that they are carrying out work outside the area allotted for the car shed,” said Bathena. NGO Vanashakti said they will raise the matter with NGT at the earliest. MPCB, BMC officials said they were not aware of the activity.

First Published: Jun 01, 2018 01:07 IST