No relief for NGO by HC for stay on dam project
The Bombay High Court not to put stay on the construction of an irrigation dam in Maharashtra’s Sindhudurg district
Mumbai: An NGO today moved the Bombay High Court seeking a stay on the construction of an irrigation dam in Maharashtra’s Sindhudurg district, alleging environmental clearances were not obtained by authorities.
In its PIL, the NGO urged the HC to grant a stay on the process initiated for acquisition of land for constructing Sarambala Irrigation Medium project in the coastal district.
However, hearing the petition filed by Vanashakti, a bench headed by Justice V M Kanade did not grant any relief and allowed two weeks’ time to Konkan Irrigation Development Corporation (KIDC), the implementing agency, to file a reply.
Counsel for the Union government said they had not been served with a copy of the PIL, following which the court asked the petitioner to do so.
Pradeep Patil, counsel for KIDC, said the construction of the dam started in 2006-07 but the work was halted in 2008 due to inadequate budgetary provision.
He argued that all the modalities for carrying out the construction of the dam had been completed and urged for dismissal of PIL, saying it had “vested interest”.
He said the approval was given way back in in 1995 by the Government of Maharashtra for the same and the construction began in 2006.
The KIDC lawyer said mandatory approval from Ministry of Environment and Forests was not required in this case, as claimed by the petitioner, because it was an old project and did not fit into the norms requiring permission.