The Bombay High Court on Tuesday allowed a batch of petitions challenging the construction of the Bombay Municipal Corporation (BMC) Coastal Road Project worth Rs. 14,000 crore.
A Division Bench of Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and Justice NM Jamdar put aside the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) clearance, saying environmental clearance is required.
#Breaking The #BombayHC today allowed a batch of Public Interest Litigations ( PIL) challenging the BMC coastal road project worth Rs. 14,000 crores.— Bar & Bench (@barandbench) July 16, 2019
The HC said that the environmental clearance is required.
State counsel requests stay on the order. HC denied it. pic.twitter.com/5pbhGXFFIR
“We are quashing the CRZ clearances granted to the project. We have held that the environment clearance is required for the project,” the bench said.
The Bombay High Court, on July 1, had reserved judgment in a batch of PILs challenging the BMC's Coastal Road Project, which is to connect South Mumbai's Marine Drive area to Kandivali in North Mumbai. The project was challenged by environmental activists, residents and the fishing community from Worli Koliwada.
Appearing for the petitioners, Senior Advocate Janak Dwarakadas argued that the project lacks several clearances and permissions including those from the MoEFFCC, the Maharashtra State Coastal Zone Management Authority, and the Mumbai Heritage Conservation Committee. He also challenged that he reclamation work in South Mumbai would destroy marine life, damage to the coastline and affect the livelihoods of the fishing community, reported the Bar and Bench.
It was further submitted that the BMC had initially applied for approvals for the entire 35-km-long project. However, when they were refused approvals, they split the project into two, and sought permission for the South and North Coastal Road, stating that they were two separate projects.
The state and the BMC argued that no environmental clearance was required for the South Coastal Road, as it is a linear road and not an area development project. The BMC also asserted that the project has got CRZ permissions.
In April, the high court prohibited the BMC from carrying out any further work on the project following which the corporation appealed in the Supreme Court. In May, the apex court permitted the corporation to carry out the existing work but prohibited it from doing any new work.
The apex court then directed the high court to take up the petitions for final hearing.