NGT slams brakes on former Mohali mayor’s housing project

National Green Tribunal has ordered immediate stoppage of work at Falcon View, a housing project being developed by former Mohali mayor Kulwant Singh’s firm in Sectors 66, 82 and 83. Reason: The firm did not obtain environmental clearance before starting construction.

As per norms, each residential project covered under the environmental impact assessment notification 2006 is required to obtain clearance from the ministry of environment, forest and climate change before initiating any activity at the project site.

There are around 1,700 flats in the said project, and the builder has already completed 50% construction.

In the orders issued on January 7, NGT said that despite repeated directions by the state-level environment impact assessment authority and initiation of prosecution, the builder continued construction in utter disregard and defiance of the statutory norms.

The plea that a writ petition has been filed against the assessment authority’s order cannot in any manner justify continuing illegal constructions, for which there is no sanction in any of the orders of the high court, said NGT, adding that the builder is trying to create an irreversible situation by completing the construction and creating third-party rights, which is not congenial to the enforcement of rule of law and protection of environment and public health.

A senior official of Punjab Pollution Control Board said: “The orders have been sent to our legal team and action will be initiated once we get its report.” Meanwhile, Kulwant Singh was not available for comments even after repeated attempts.

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