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No felling of trees for any project in Punjab: Green tribunal wants status report

The orders were issued on July 10. NGT has directed to Punjab government on the petitions which were filed by Chandigarh- based Peacock Environment & Wild Life Protection Society and a Sangrur-based Dr Amandeep Aggarwal.

punjab Updated: Jul 13, 2017 21:16 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Sangrur
National Green Tribunal,Peacock Environment & Wild Life Protection Society,Punjab
(HT Representative Image)

Putting a blanket ban on felling of trees for projects in Punjab, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the state government that no new project be undertaken without its permission.

The NGT orders of July 10 came on petitions filed by Chandigarh-based NGO Peacock Environment and Wild Life Protection Society and Dr Amandeep Aggarwal of Sangrur.

Though the tribunal had directed the state on May 19 to ban tree-felling for any project and also sought a report on axing in Nawanshahr (SBS Nagar) and Jalandhar districts, the government had moved to high court and then the Supreme Court seeking a stay.

The fresh orders by NGT chairperson justice Swatanter Kumar direct the state to file the latest status report “in relation to how many trees have been felled for different projects and what steps have been taken for afforestation”. Also, it underlines that “in terms of the Tribunal order dated 19th May, 2017, the state government shall not fell any trees till further orders”. The next hearing is on August 9.

Dr Amandeep said that at many places trees were being axed without forest department clearance and there was no effort made for transplantation or compensatory forestation.

“Breather after breather has been given by worthy courts against the tribunal’s order. The fresh NGT orders have put an end to the piecemeal stay of axing ban orders through a legalized mockery of a constitutional body (NGT),” said the petitioner.

First Published: Jul 13, 2017 20:57 IST