The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the government to consider circulating standard operating procedure (SOP) to all State Environment Impact Assessment Authorities (SEIAAs) for such activities. After noting continuous violation of environment norms in construction projects, the NGT has decided to give this directive to the government.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel while hearing a case against order of Maharashtra SEIAA granting environmental clearance (EC) to the “Ganga Altus” construction project in Pune passed this order.
The plea filed by Tanaji B Gambhire alleged that Goel Ganga India Pvt Ltd was carrying out construction project illegally without the mandatory prior EC.
“Since we are coming across the grievance of continuous violation of environment norms in construction projects being completed without prior EC and the SEIAA, Maharashtra is neither requiring demolition nor payment of assessed compensation to comply with the rule of law and protection of environment, it will be appropriate to require the SEIAA, Maharashtra to review its working in the light of the judgments of the Supreme Court.
“A proper SOP be laid down for grant of EC in such cases so as to address the gaps in binding law and practice being currently followed. The MoEF may also consider circulating such SOP to all SEIAAs in the country,” the NGT said.