In Gurgaon, the District Pollution Control Board has ruled out the need for an environmental clearance for the widening of the road connecting the Ambience Mall to sectors 55 and 56. The pollution control board had submitted an affidavit in this regard to the National Green Tribunal (NGT) on July 10 after the latter issued a directive that an environment clearance was mandatory from the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF).
A total of 1,057 trees along the 7.5-km stretch will have to be axed to pave way for the Rs 600-crore freeway corridor project.
Rajesh Gharia, Regional Officer of Haryana Pollution Control Board (HPCB), Gurgaon, said that as per the Environment Protection Act, such a clearance is required only for roads which are more than 30-km long and for national and state highways. But this project is about widening the road in a sector. Also, the stretch is not a part of any national or State highway. There is no need for any clearance, he said.
Private developer DLF said it had sought permission from the Gurgaon divisional forest officer for felling the trees. In their affidavit submitted to the NGT, the developer stated that the above application is found and based on the premise that the permission has not been obtained from the forest department for cutting or removal of the trees, which is entailed by the road widening work.
The court proceedings date back to May, when residents of the National Media Centre (NMC) had filed a petition in the NGT after Haryana Urban Development Authority (Huda) and DLF axed 50 trees in the gated communityÂ’s greenbelt to construct a road.
The petition was filed against DLF, Huda, MoEF, Central Pollution Control Board, Haryana, Haryana State Pollution Control Board, Gurgaon deputy commissioner and police commissioner. The NGT has accepted affidavits for investigation. The next hearing is scheduled for July 25.
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