Lavasa officials meet Ramesh, look for ''negotiated solution''

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New Delhi, Jan 24 (PTI) After offering a lifeline tothe controversial Lavasa hill city, Environment MinisterJairam Ramesh today said efforts are being made to find a"negotiated solution" on the stalled Rs 3,000-crore project inPune.

"We are trying to find a negotiated solution...tryingto find a compromise," Ramesh told reporters when asked abouthis meeting with officials from the Hindustan ConstructionCompany Limited, which is undertaking the township project.

According to sources close to the development,company''s chairman and Managing Director Ajit Gulabchand andother officials met the minister at his office today.

Providing a ray of hope for Lavasa, which allegedlyviolated green norms, the Environment Ministry had said lastweek that it was prepared to consider the project beingconstructed near Pune on "merits" subject to fulfilment ofcertain conditions.

The Ministry, however, had ordered that no furtherconstruction should be undertaken for now.

Ramesh, who said that the government''s meetings withHindustan Construction Company Limited officials were stillon, maintained that "we don''t want to minimise the integrityof the environmental process."

"The environmental integrity has to be maintained,"the Minister said.

He said that the company officials have "mentioned tome that the project needs to go forward."

"Now we are trying to see that how best theconditions can be fulfilled," Ramesh said.

The Minister said the court will consider the case onJanuary 27. "Let us see what will happen," he added.

The Ministry''s recent order had held that theconstruction is "unauthorised" involving "environmentaldegradation" and hence status quo should be maintained onconstruction on the project in accordance with the Ministry''sNovember 25, 2010 order prohibiting any work at the site. PTITGB

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