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CRZ violations: HC orders notice to environnment, forest secys

Press Trust of India  |  Madurai 

The Madras High Court has ordered notice to Environment and Forest secretaries of the Union and Tamil Nadu governments based on the Advocate Commissioner's report which said more than 60 buildings in Kanyakumari district were constructed violating the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) notification.

Besides these Secretaries, the court also ordered a notice to Tamil Nadu coastal zone management authority member- secretary, the Kanyakumari District Collector, the town panchayat executive officer and the environmental engineer.

The report was submitted in court by the Advocate Commissioner after the bench called for it on a PIL filed by one N Sivakumar who alleged violations in the constructions.

The petitioner said Kanyakumari has been classified as CRZ-II area and as per CRZ notification, buildings should not be erected on the seaward side of the existing road.

He alleged a person was constructing a building violating the norms and that he had sent a representation in vain to the officers concerned on May 7 to to stop the illegal construction.

He had sought a direction to the officials to stop the illegal construction.

The court appointed, by its interim order on May 21, R M Arunswaminathan as Advocate Commissioner and directed him to visit the spot to verify if there there were any violations or not.

The AC confirmed the violations and said there were many constructions in the coastal zone violating the legal provisions, the petitioner said.

"As per the CRZ notification and government order of the municipal administration and water supply department, the maximum height limit of a building is nine metres. Besides, Kanyakumari also comes under the Tamil Nadu Cyclone Prone Area Special Building Rules so that no construction should be made within one km from the sea area. But it was found in a short span of time that 63 buildings have been constructed violating the norms," the report said.

He referred to the recent building collapse in Chennai in which 61 persons were killed and alleged the entire Kanyakumari district was covered by illegal constructions and hence it was a must to stop all violations. There would be irreparable loss to the public in future if violations were not stopped, he said.

Justices M Jaichandren and R Mahadevan then ordered notice to the officials concerned.

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First Published: Mon, August 04 2014. 23:19 IST