Other States

NGT slaps Rs. 25-crore penalty on Adani group

In a setback to the Gujarat-based Adani group, the National Green Tribunal has quashed the environmental clearance (EC) given for its ambitious port project in Hazira, south Gujarat, and imposed a heavy penalty of Rs. 25 crore for restoration of the environment that has been damaged and degraded.

The tribunal passed its order on a petition filed by the Hazira Fishermen Committee that challenged the multi-crore infrastructure project on the ground that besides damaging the ecology, the project had also displaced more than 300 poor fishermen families, who cannot do fishing in the area as their access had been blocked.

In its order dated January 8, the NGT’s western zone bench in Pune held that the environmental clearance granted to the port project in 2013 by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, was “illegal and must be set aside.”

Coming down heavily on the Adani group entity Adani Hazira Port Private Ltd (AHPPL), the bench observed, “The fact remains that undaunted by the absence of EC and CRZ clearance, the AHPPL proceeded with expansion work after 2007 and did not care for any adverse order or impact on the environment. Such irresponsible attitude must be deprecated.”

According to the bench of Justice V.R. Kingaonkar, the respondent AHPPL is liable to pay Rs.25 crore as penalty for restoration. It also restrained the company from closing or narrowing the mouth of the creek or access of the boats of the traditional fishermen in the village.

The Adani group refused to comment on the NGT’s order.

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Printable version | Oct 25, 2020 3:33:31 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/NGT-slaps-Rs.-25-crore-penalty-on-Adani-group/article14001929.ece

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