Omaxe New Chandigarh Lake View ILLEGAL
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New Chandigarh Omaxe Project Lake View encroached the River Bed

Next hearing on 9 Feb 2021

Omaxe Chandigarh Extension Developer Pvt. Ltd. ambitious project LAKE VIEW situated in New Chandigarh stands illegal as they had encroached the river bed and National Green Tribunal ordered Punjab Government to constitute a committee and demolish the illegal construction that Omaxe did on the river bed and further maintain the flow of the river as it used to be.

NGT in its orders asked the Punjab Government to take remedial actions to conserve the river bed and also take suitable action against the Omaxe Chandigarh Extension Developer Pvt. Ltd. NGT read out the committee findings and next hearing is on 9 February 2021 for the further actions.

Findings of the committee has been :-
i) The committee observed that the natural flow of river Siswan was disturbed by M/s. Omaxe Chandigarh Extension Developer Pvt. Ltd. by providing pipes of 5’ diameter beneath the road, which are not sufficient to
cater the discharge flowing in the river(Nadi).

ii) Area adjoining to the creek has also been filled with the construction debris thrown by M/s. Omaxe Chandigarh Extension Developer Pvt. Ltd.

Recommendations by the committee have been:-
i) GMADA will construct culverts at point A for passing 2000 cusecs of water and at point B for the passing of 2650 cusecs of water after vetting drawings from the Water Resources Department.
ii) M/s. Omaxe Chandigarh Extension Developer Pvt. Ltd shall remove the debris from the water way of the natural drain and restore the level of the land to the original level. GMADA shall ensure the compliance of the notice issued by it.
iii) M/s. Omaxe Chandigarh Extension Developer Pvt. Ltd shall protect the left side of the creek of the reach adjoining to “The Lake Project and the left edge of the road from point A to B along the creek with the help of stone
pitching as per the undertaking 22/10/2019 submitted by it. GMADA and Water Resource Department shall ensure the compliance of the same.”

  • Let the above recommendations be complied with and overseen by Secretary Irrigation Department, Punjab, and Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA).
  • The State PCB may assess and recover compensation on the ‘Polluter Pays’ principle. The GMADA may also enforce its directions in the letter dated 28.03.2014, Annexure B-1 to the report. The Committee may look into the issue of diversion of the river at village Kansala which has not been gone into so far. Illegal filling up of the river and raising illegal construction and remedial action be also examined by the Committee. The illegal construction may either have to be removed or compensation assessed and recovered. For this purpose, representatives of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), IIT Roorkee, and the State PCB will be a separate Committee. The nodal agency for compliance and coordination would be the State PCB. A report may be furnished before the next date by e-mail
    at judicial-ngt@gov.in.”
  • In pursuance of the above, a report dated 08.09.2020 from SEIAA,
    Punjab has been filed alongwith a letter of the Chief Engineer, Water
    Resources Department, Punjab as follows:

    “With reference to the above-mentioned subject, a detailed report was submitted vide this office letter 2344/3-drainage dated 27.11.2019. Vide reference letter, report has been desired by your office regarding illegal filling of river and diversion of river at Village Kansala.
    In this regard, Superintending Engineer, Patiala Drainage Circle, Patiala vide his office letter no. 1210/4-L dated 19.06.2020 has submitted that the flow of the creek passing through the pipe culverts near ‘The Lake’ project again returns to the right side and runs through the old bed of river and flows downstream, At present, there is no obstruction in the
    natural flow of the river near village Kansala.”
  • Learned Counsel for the applicants submits that the above report does not show compliance of the order of this Tribunal. Mere statement that the flow of the river is not obstructed is not adequate and is in conflict with the earlier reports referred to in the order dated 03.03.2020. It is also pointed out that the matter has been dealt with only by the Executive Engineer of the Water Resources department, without involvement of other concerned Departments, including GMADA, Housing and Urban Development Department, the Environment Department and the Irrigation Department.
  • In view of above, we direct the Chief Secretary, Punjab to call a
    meeting of the concerned departments viz. GMADA, the Housing and
    Urban Development Department, the Irrigation Department, and the
    Environment Department within one month to look into the matter and take remedial action and furnish a report after taking information from all the said departments within three months by e-mail at judicialngt@gov.in.

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By Taruni Gandhi

Taruni Gandhi is an ace writer and journalist with over a decade experience in covering health, social issues. She can be contacted at taru.gandhi@gmail.com.

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