NGT refuses to quash Coastal Zone Management Plan for Sub-Urban Mumbai

New Delhi [India], September 11 (ANI): The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has refused to quash the Coastal Zone Management Plan for Sub-Urban Mumbai and directed the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority to maintain a strict vigil against any violation of the same.

September 11, 2020

National

4 min

zeenews

New Delhi [India], September 11 (ANI): The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has refused to quash the Coastal Zone Management Plan for Sub-Urban Mumbai and directed the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority to maintain a strict vigil against any violation of the same.
A bench of the NGT, headed by its chairperson AK Goel, was hearing an application filed by one Sonia Raj Sood seeking quashing of the CZMP for Sub-Urban Mumbai to the extent of inclusion of Bandra Fort and its adjoining plots in Coastal Regulation Zone-II (CRZ-II).
“We do not find any ground to quash the final Coastal Zone Management Plan in question. We, however, direct the MCZMA to maintain strict vigil against any violation of the Coastal Zone Management Plan,” the bench said in its order issued on Wednesday.
The application raised particular objection to the inclusion of a certain area in Bandra (West), as the said area is within 100 meters of Bandra Fort and further prayer is to restore the original status of the said area as CRZ-I(A), as indicated in the State Approved Draft CZMP.
The bench, disposing of the plea, said, “We find that the joint Committee has visited the site and duly verified the factual position exhaustively. There is no justification to cast aspersions on the Committee of experts who are public servants.”
“The factual position with respect to all the three objections of the applicant location of the hotel in CRZ II, the FSI and the mangroves has been clearly explained, as mentioned and quoted earlier. We considered the objections of the applicant and heard her at length,” it added.
According to the applicant, there are 30 to 35 other plots shown in CRZ-II by changing status of CRZ-III. The applicant had also sought depiction of marine life, mangroves, rocks, etc in Bandra Bandstand coast as per the original state-approved plan.
According to the applicant, the change has been effected by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) without application of mind and in violation of ‘Precautionary’ and ‘Sustainable Development’ principles.
The objections of the applicant are recorded in the notings of the Coastal Officer dated May 16, 2018, but the same have been ignored without any examination.
The objections of the applicant were opposed by the counsel for the respondents, including the project proponent, MCZMA and MoEF&CC. They have supported the report and submitted that the CZMP has been rightly approved.
“NCSCM has prepared the plan and correctly depicted the open areas. A major part of the area is in CRZ-II. The existing structure of the hotel is in CRZ-II. No construction is proposed on the area in CRZ-I. EC and CRZ clearances mention that the parking structure is permitted as part of the main building,” the bench said.
“The MCZMA in its 122nd meeting on November 2, 2018, has cancelled the additional FSI proposal for the hotel. In the draft CZMP map, hotel site was erroneously shown as Bandra Fort classified as CRZ-IA which has been now corrected,” it added. (ANI)

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