Tuesday , 23 October 2018
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SC fines Maharashtra builder Rs 100 crore for violating EC

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has fined a builder Rs 100 crore for undertaking construction of a project in Pune in violation of the environment clearance (EC) given to it.

The court imposed damages of Rs 100 crore or 10 per cent of the project cost whichever is more, as it modified the 2016 order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) on the quantum of damages while retaining the rest.

The NGT by its September 27, 2016 order had said that the project developer will pay environment compensation cost of Rs 100 crore or 5 per cent of the total cost of project to be assessed by SEAC whichever is less.

The project is located in Vadgaon in Pune.

Upholding the NGT order of September 27, 2016 modifying the quantum of compensation, the top court bench of Justice Madan B Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta by their judgment reiterated the green tribunal’s order imposing a fine of five lakh on the Pune Municipal

Corporation.

“We impose damages of Rs 100 crore or 10 per cent of the project cost, whichever is higher on the project proponent and in addition thereto, project proponent will pay Rs five crore as levied by the NGT in its order dated September 27, 2016,” said Justice Deepak Gupta in the judgment pronounced on Friday.

The NGT had imposed the environmental compensation cost for “restoration and restitution of environment damages and degradation caused by the project proponent by carrying out the construction activities without the necessary prior environmental clearance within a period of one month.”

In addition to environmental compensation cost the green tribunal had imposed cost of Rs five crore for “contravening mandatory provision of several environmental laws in carrying out the  construction activities in addition to and exceeding limit of the available environment clearance and for not obtaining the consent from the Board.”

Reiterating the NGT order, the top court directed Maharashtra Chief Secretary to look into the conduct of the official holding the post of Principal Secretary (Environment) to the state government on September 27, 2016.

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