New Delhi, May 15: The National Green Tribunal has issued notice to South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) to show cause why coercive steps be not taken against it for failing to stop construction on the Saket storm water drain allegedly by authorities at a gurudwara.
"Issue notice to as to why coercive action under Order XXI Rule 32 of Civil Procedure Code be not taken against them for not taking any action for stopping construction on the Saket storm water drain," a bench headed by Justice U D Salvi said.
The matter is now listed for hearing on May 23. The order came while hearing a plea filed by environmental activist Manoj Mishra, also associated with Yamuna Jiye Abhiyaan, seeking execution of the green panel's January 13, 2015 direction which said "there shall be no construction and/or coverage of any of the drains in Delhi by any authority or Municipal Corporation."
"All the drains shall be kept obstruction free by the concerned corporation. Where substantial work (more than 85 per cent) has been completed, such work is permitted to be completed by the corporation after obtaining specific orders from the Tribunal in that regard. "Rest of the work, where construction has just begun, the construction, including iron material, shall be removed.
While completing such remnant work, Corporation shall ensure that the cross section of the drains to carry the requisite storm water for the flood of once in 25 years and other effluents are not compromised," the tribunal had said.
Mishra has claimed that authorities at Gurudwara Sri Guru Singh Sabha were carrying out illegal construction on the drain and sought directions to SDMC and Public Works Department to restrain the construction over and above the drain.
"In case the Gurudwara is not stopped from illegally covering the storm water drain it would not only lead to violation of the judgment passed by this Tribunal but would also be a loss to the ecology and environment of the area and the community at large," the plea, filed through advocate Rahul Choudhary said.
It also alleged that the Gurudwara authorities were dumping sewage into the drain from its building through a pipeline.