The Tamil Nadu government has moved the Supreme Court against a National Green Tribunal (NGT) decision to close proceedings against the Mekedatu dam project.
The tribunal had in June expressed its satisfaction over the Karnataka government’s submissions that requisite environmental clearances were pending consideration before the concerned statutory authorities.
Tamil Nadu submitted in the top court that the case had been closed by the NGT without giving it (Tamil Nadu) an opportunity to present its side of the case.
Tamil Nadu said, “NGT failed to consider that the pending adjudication relates to the challenge to the preparation of Detailed Project Report for Mekedatu Balancing Reservoir Cum Drinking Water Project, while, the issue raised in the original application was with regard to taking up road laying work without taking any forest and environment clearances under the Forest Conservation Act, 2003 and Environment Impact Assessment Notification, 2006 and the impact on the nearby Reserve Forests and Wildlife Sanctuaries.”
Admittedly, the project involves a total of 5,252.40 hectares, out of which 4,996 hectares is under submergence, Tamil Nadu said.
“The Tribunal, which is established to ensure effective environmental protections and conservation of forest, has a power coupled with duty to ensure that the project proponent does not violate the mandate and not to undertake any work without getting prior approvals from the authorities,” the State said in its appeal.
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