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‘Really shocking’, says Supreme Court as it slams Haryana government for allowing construction in Aravali Hills

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New Delhi | Published: March 1, 2019 6:26:14 PM

The Supreme Court on Friday slammed the Haryana Government for amending the Punjab Land Preservation Act (LPA) in the state Assembly.

Supreme Court , haryana, manohar lal khattar, cm manihar lal khattar, aravali, aravali hills, scSupreme Court (PTI)

The Supreme Court on Friday slammed the Haryana Government for amending the Punjab Land Preservation Act (LPA) in the state Assembly. It asked the state government not to enact the law that opens thousands of acres for construction purpose in Aravali forests, news agency ANI reported.

“It is really shocking. You are destroying the forest. It is not permissible,” the apex court told the Manohar Lal Khattar Government. The state has seen a massive outcry from Opposition parties for amending a couple of provisions of the act that permits construction and other activities in forests. The step to amend the 119-year-old Act will have a massive impact on the Aravali forests in National Capital Region (NCR).

Opposition parties in the state including the Congress have alleged that the state government’s move smelled “multi-crore scam” and that the amendment would take the forest areas out of ecological preserves. Supporting the move, CM Manohar Lal Khattar told the Assembly that , “It is a very old Act and amending it is the need of the hour since much has changed over time”.

The then Punjab Government had amended the act in 1900. The law that provides conservation of subsoil water and/or prevention of erosion in some areas have been found to be subject to erosion or may become liable to erosion.

The Opposition has observed that there is 7 percent forest cover in Haryana and the Aravalis help in maintaining ecology in the Delhi-NCR. It also added that legal amendment will give permission to unauthorised constructions that started since 1966 as the new law will come into existence with retrospective effect.

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