‘State-level agency can’t give nod to Amaravati, a Category A project’

November 04, 2016 12:00 am | Updated December 02, 2016 01:26 pm IST - VIJAYAWADA:

The State-level Environmental Impact Assessment Agency – Andhra Pradesh (SEIAA-AP) was not empowered to grant environmental clearance for the construction of Amaravati city as it was Category A Project, Sanjay Parikh, counsel of Satya Bolisetti, at the National Green Tribunal (NGT) hearing held in New Delhi.

Mr. Bolisetti filed a petition in the NGT against the granting of environmental clearance to the Amaravati project.

The NGT heard the arguments against the validity of the Environmental Clearance given to the city of Amaravati by the SEIAA-AP and other aspects on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Mr. Parikh, presenting his arguments before the NGT bench chaired by Justice Swatanter Kumar, said that the State-level bodies were empowered to give clearance to small townships and definitely not cities of the magnitude of Amaravati.

The NGT was informed that the environment clearance was granted to the Capital city project in tremendous “haste.”

While public hearings were mandatory, at least two seasons were needed to grant clearance to Category A Projects, the counsel said.

The NGT was apprised about the proximity of the proposed capital to the Narla Tatarao Thermal Power Station across the Krishna River.

All Category A projects proposed around thermal power stations should be cleared by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (MoEF) and not State-level bodies, Mr. Parikh pointed out.

Large-scale conversion

of agricultural lands

Detailed arguments were made on alterations being made to the course of Kondaveeti Vagu, plans to construct capital on floodplains and on the 2009 Krishna River Flood Zone. He also highlighted the large-scale conversion of agricultural land for construction of Amaravati.

State-level bodies were empowered to give clearance to small townships and definitely not cities of the magnitude of Amaravati.

Sanjay Parikh

Counsel

The National Green Tribunal heard the arguments against the validity of Environmental Clearance given to the capital

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