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HC stays notification on Blue Flag for Miramar beach

Panaji: The High Court of Bombay at Goa has stayed the notification of the Union ministry of environment, forest and climate change on Blue Flag certification pertaining to Miramar beach.

A division bench of the HC consisting Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and Justice Mahesh Sonak said the operation of the impugned notification shall remain stayed pertaining to Miramar beach.

Activist Kashinath Shetye and others had filed a petition challenging the MoEF&CC notification issued on July 12, 2019.

As per the petitioners, the beaches covered by the notification include Miramar beach.

Though not pleaded in the petition, the first petitioner, who appeared in person in the court, stated that if public notice was issued as contemplated by clause (a) of sub-rule(3) of Rule 5, it would have informed  the Union ministry that the facilities permitted as per the notification already exist at the beach and, therefore, permitting the same up to a distance of 10 metre from the HTL was not necessary; and if permitted the facilities would result in environmental damages.

The HC has issued notice to the MoEF&CC, and the matter has been  fixed for next hearing on November 4.

The Union environment ministry in its notification had permitted on beaches – identified for Blue Flag certification – the setting up of  structures such as toilet blocks, shower panels, mini grey water treatment plant, off grid solar PV panels, LED landscape lighting, beach access pathways, bamboo-made seating benches, CCTV control rooms etc

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