NGT likely to dispose of Polavaram case today

New Delhi: The Principal Bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) is likely to dispose of the case relating to the controversial Polavaram project Tuesday as it has asked the petitioner to explain why NGT should hear the case.
The case came up for hearing Monday before a three-judge bench of the tribunal headed by its chairman Justice Swatanter Kumar besides additional judges Justice Jawad Rahim and Justice Bikram Sajwan. During the hearing, the bench took on the petitioner (RELA) for raising issues that are already in the Supreme Court.
The bench said, “Every matter you are raising in the tribunal is pending before the highest court. They are sub-judice. We cannot exercise ‘parallel jurisdiction’. If the Supreme Court wanted it could have transferred the case to us. Everyday there are 10 cases transferred to us (from SC).”
The bench in its oral order also asked the petitioner to examine and make its submission on why the case should be heard at the NGT when similar cases are ongoing at the apex court. “You (petitioner) examine the issue. We are going to dispose of the case tomorrow (Tuesday),” the bench said.
On Tuesday, the Andhra Pradesh government is going to produce the original applications relating to the Polavaram project that are in the apex court as per the earlier direction of the NGT and put forth before the bench matters under contention raised in the apex court.
The Orissa government, meanwhile, in its earlier statement had told the NGT that they would not hold any public hearing in the case till the matter is disposed of in the Supreme Court. The state government, nevertheless, had earlier expressed apprehensions in the Supreme Court regarding the environmental clearance, forest clearance and other matters relating to the Polavaram case.

Manish Kumar, OP

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