Ten days after PM Modi laid the foundation stone for the R11,420-crore Pune Metro project, the National Green Tribunal’s Western Zone Bench has ordered a stay on a portion of the project. The NGT issued an interim stay on the Metro route passing through the Mula-Mutha river bed in Pune.
Architect Sarang Yadwadkar, MP Anu Aga and journalist Late Dileep Padgaonkar were amongst the petitioners of this environmental interest litigation and this was filed in May 2016 regarding destruction of the riverbank ecosystem along this route. They had expressed concern in the event of floods and emergency situation. The case came up for final hearing on January 2, 2017, before the NGT.
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The Tribunal directed Pune Municipal Corporation not to construct in the prohibited zone of 1.7 k.m. on the left bank of the river that is inside the Blue Line of the river bed of Mula Mutha till 25/1/2017. In the mean time, work of planning, designing and approval can be processed further. The Tribunal has not laid such restriction on presently ongoing geo-tech and topographical study being conducted on the other parts of the alignment including the river bed. The next date of hearing is January 25, 2017.
This stay will impact the first Phase of the Pune Metro’s Line 2 which is 15 km long from Vanaz to Ramwadi.