Mumbai’s Rs 1400 crore coastal road project halted for want of proper environmental clearance
Bombay High Court cancels CRZ clearance given to BMC
July 16, 2019
The Bombay High Court has cancelled the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) clearance given to Brihan Municipal Corporation (BMC) for developing an ambitious Rs 1,400 crore coastal road project.
A two-judge bench of Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and Justice Nitin Jamdar while dictating the judgement said: “We are quashing the CRZ clearances granted to the project. We have held that the environment clearance is required for the project”.
A batch of Public Interest Litigation petitions were filed by Shweta Wagh, Worli fishermen, Conservation Action Trust, Vanashakti, Society for Improvement, Greenery and Nature NGOs challenging the illegal “green clearance” obtained from the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change in May 2017. They contended before the court that BMC’s coastal road project lacked prior environmental clearance under the Environmental Impact Assessment Notification, 2006.
Mumbai’s coastal road project proposes to connect Marine Drive, the southern part of the city, with Borivali, the northern suburbs, along its western coast. On the proposed 35 kms long coastal road, around 11 kms of the road is proposed to be built on 415 acres of land reclaimed from the sea. Though it was argued by the municipal corporation that the road project would reduce travel time and environmental pollution in the city, environmentalists and experts warned that it would do irreversibly damages to Mumbai’s fragile natural coastline.
With the Bombay High Court order, no further work can be done on the coastal road project until complete environment clearances have been obtained legally.
First published in The Leaflet.
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