The National Green Tribunal’s (NGT’s) west zone bench, on January 2, 2017, comprising justice UD Salavi and Dr Ajay Deshpande, granted an interim stay on any kind of construction of the Pune Metro route corridor between Vanaz and Ramwadi, passing through the Mula-Mutha riverbed, said advocate Asim Sarode. Sarode had filed an Environmental Interest Litigation (EIL) in the NGT on May 26, 2016, on behalf of a group of prominent personalities from the city. He said directions have been given to add Maharashtra Metro Corporation in the array of respondents.
Meanwhile, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), which is the primary respondent, said that during the argument, the Government Resolution, passed by Maharashtra’s Urban Development Department, regarding the sanctions and establishment of Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (SPV) and direction to execute the metro work, was placed before the tribunal. The tribunal mentioned that since the process of registration of the SPV is currently being carried out and thus, not yet registered under the Companies Act, the SPV cannot be made a necessary party in the present application, the civic body said in a release.
“PMC’s advocate mentioned that the process of registration would be completed in 15 days,” it added.
It further stated that the tribunal directed the PMC not to construct in the prohibited zone of 1.7 kilometres on the left bank of the river, i.e., inside the Blue Line of the riverbed of Mula-Mutha till January 25, 2017.
“In the meantime, the work of planning, designing and approval can be processed further. The tribunal has not laid such restriction on presently ongoing geo-tech and topographical study being conducted on the other parts of the alignment, including the riverbed,” said the release.
A group of prominent personalities from the city had filed an EIL in the NGT against the Pune Metro Rail project, strongly objecting to the alignment of some portion of its route through riverbeds. Member of Parliament Anu Aga, architect Sarang Yadwadkar and Aarti Kirloskar, had filed the litigation through Sarode.