The National Green Tribunal has refused to entertain a plea seeking to stop construction under the Regional Rapid Transit System to connect various NCR towns with high-speed rails, saying the project is meant for facilitating public transport. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said beyond making bald averments that parks and green belts will be ruined, the plea does not provide any tangible material to support such a claim.
The green panel said the applicants have not approached the environmental regulators who are under obligation to take remedial action in case of violation of environmental norms.
"This tribunal cannot proceed on a presumption that there will be a violation of environmental norms. It is seen that the project is meant for facilitating public transport and in reply to the notice of the applicants, the project proponent has clearly stated that the norms will be duly complied and all mitigation measures will be taken.
"We have no doubt that the statutory regulators will ensure such compliances in accordance with the law. We, thus, do not find any ground to entertain this application at this stage, which will stand disposed of accordingly," the bench said.
The tribunal was hearing a plea filed by Ashwini Sharma and others seeking stoppage of construction activities under the Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) being undertaken by National Capital Region Transport Corporation and others.
In response to a legal notice from the applicant, the National Capital Region Transport Corporation said the project is aimed at reducing traffic congestion on roads through high-speed public transport.
In 2019-20, the Centre had allocated Rs 824 crore for the country's first Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS).Out of the eight identified RRTS corridors to connect various NCR towns with high-speed rails, three have been prioritised for implementation in Phase-1 by a task force. These are Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut, Delhi-Gurugram-SNB-Alwar and Delhi-Panipat.