The National Green Tribunal (NGT) petitioner Pandalaneni Srimannarayana, who is entwined in a legal battle against the Andhra Pradesh government's plan to construct its capital on the Krishna river bank on Thursday said that the stay order issued by the NGT in early October still held good and no construction could be taken up by the state of the CRDA.
Speaking to newsmen in Vijayawada, he condemned the alleged destruction of the banana plantation of a farmer who did not give up his land. â€śLeave alone destroying crops on private land, neither the CRDA nor the Government can lift a fistful of earth even from the land that has been surrendered under the LPS since there is a stay order and the issue at stake is the possible damage the construction of capital would do to environment," he said.
In February this year, Srimannarayana approached the Supreme Court first but was directed to go to the NGT, where he filed a petition claiming that the areas under the capital were classified in Seismic Zone III and prone to earthquakes. He also claimed that fertile land would be destroyed by urbanization.
Prohibiting construction, the NGT had said "Stay orders prohibiting all kinds of construction in the capital city zone will continue. Do not take up even land leveling work and do not remove any crop from this zone."
However, the government has since gone ahead with its plan and laid the foundation stone for the capital.
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Srimannaryayana has also since filed another petition with the NGT, with regard to the contempt proceedings that the NGT had initiated against the CRDA for violating the stay orders.
The CRDA has argued that all environmental clearances have been obtained. However, the petitioner said that the clearances being referred to were given by the state-level agency of the Union Ministry of Environment clearance while the clearance should be obtained from the Centre.