By Accommodation Times Bureau
Pune: The Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation (Maha-Metro) has challenged the jurisdiction of the city’s National Green Tribunal (NGT) bench to hear an application.
An application was filed against the proposed Pune metro route alignment passing through a 1.7km stretch of the Mutha river bed, in May last year by architect Sarang Yadvadkar, industrialist Anu Aga and others.
Pune’s National Green Tribunal (NGT) bench has declared their decision which is in turn challenged by The Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation (Maha-Metro).nThe arguments began before the NGT bench of comprising Justice U D Salvi and expert member Nagin Nanda .
Maha-Metro’s lawyer S K Mishra cited provisions under the Metro Railways(Construction of Works) Act of 1978 and submitted that the enactment allows the project executioner to go ahead with the construction works without any legal hindrance. He submitted that the enactment enables appropriate steps including diversion of river or nullahs for executing a project that is in public interest. It further provides for a remedy against any grievance only before a committee set up under the Act and later on, before the Supreme Court, he submitted.
Mishra also argued that the application against the metro route alignment had not raised any significant matter relevant to environment.
The hearing is going on , lawyer Asim Sarode, appearing for the applicants, and Maha-Metro’s lawyer S K Mishra are making their submissions on the point of jurisdiction. “Arguments over the merits of the application will begin after the NGT settles the jurisdiction issue,” said Yadvadkar.
The applicants have challenged the proposed Pune Metro rail route alignment ,on the grounds that the same would destroy the eco-system of the river.
The green tribunal had ceased the construction works , by passing an interim stay order ,on January 2.
However, the Supreme Court had directed a stay on the NGT’s order on January 20 and the process of final argument was held up till the apex court clarified in April that there was no bar on the NGT proceeding with the case hearing.