Lavasa (Marathi: लवासा) is a private planned city being built near Pune. A 25,000 acres (100 km2) or 8,000 acres (32 km2)  project being developed by HCC, this as-yet-incomplete city has been controversial for multiple reasons including procurement of land,harm to the environment,and loans acquired through political corruption.

In late 2010 the Indian Environment and Forests Ministry ordered that construction cease because the project violated environmental laws.


WHAT MOEF SAYS..

  • LCL (Lavasa Corporation Ltd) is in violation of (i) the EIA Notification, 1994; (ii) the EIA Notification, as amended in 2004; and (iii) the EIA Notification of 2006.
    The site visit report has also brought out the nature and magnitude of the environmental damage caused by the project.
    As such, the construction activity is unauthorised, being in violation of the above three notifications and is also environmentally damaging.
  • However, having regard to the above but taking into account all the facts and circumstances of the case, particularly the submissions made with regard to the investments already incurred, third-party rights which are accrued, the various steps taken for establishment of a comprehensive hill station development, the employment generated and the claimed upliftment of the area under consideration, MoEF (Ministry of Environement and Forests) is prepared to consider the project on merits with the imposition of various terms and conditions. including the following:
    • (i) The payment of substantial penalty for the violation of environmental laws, which is incontrovertible;
    • (ii) Over and above the penalty, creation of an Environmental Restoration Fund (ERF) by LCL with sufficiently large corpus which would be managed by an independent body with various stakeholders under the overall supervision of MoEF;
    • (iii) Imposition of stringent terms and conditions, to ensure that no further environmental degradation takes place and that any degradation that has already occurred would be rectified within a time-bound schedule.

WHAT LAVASA SAYS…

  • The MoEF order is more on jurisdiction than on environment issues.
  • The order states that the Maharashtra government does not have the authority for giving clearances in 2001 and 2004. It also says the government’s Hill Stations Policy of 1996 should be reviewed. This indicates that the key issue is over jurisdiction between the state and central governments and not one of environment.
  • Clause 3.78 in the report indicates that MoEF itself accepts that its EIA notification of 2006 is wrong and it needs to relook at critical aspects.
  • MoEF does not have objective and measurable norms. Therefore, instead of restricting themselves to environmental issues, it has resorted to questioning state government jurisdiction, Special Planning Authority, MKVDC land transfer, land purchase, Lavasa master plan approval by collector, Hill Station policy, regional development plan, MRTP Act, etc. These have nothing to do with environmental issues.
  • The state government has given environmental clearance for 2,000 hectares in 2004. In August 2009, Lavasa applied to the MoEF for environmental clearance under their 2006 notification for project expansion of 3,000 hectares. In spite of submitting all the relevant documents, MoEF is yet to give environment clearance. The MoEF order is conveniently silent on their delay of 18 months in granting their clearance.
  • No weight or consideration has been given to the data submitted by us on environment protection and enhancement initiatives.
  • Naresh Dayal, chairman of the technical committee, after completing his site visit made a statement to the media in Pune that there was no major environmental degradation and yet the report seems to magnify minor environmental issues to justify continuance of the stop work order.
  •  Any road under construction in hilly regions requires cutting which looks harsh and bare initially. Reference photographs included in the report only show such roads in the early stages of construction and which were only about 5 km in length. It has conveniently kept out the photographs of over 100 km of roads that have been completed with enhanced green cover.
  •  The entire process of restoration and enhancement of the ecology of the place was presented to the committee and even demonstrated at site. It has neither been acknowledged nor appreciated anywhere in the report.
    To conclude, the task entrusted to the technical committee was to survey/inspect the site and present the report, which would be of great consequence to the authority to pass the final orderreport misrepresents state of affairs at the site, it is bound to have a negative bearing on the decision of the competent authority
    LCL’s legal counsels are studying the order and will explore all options available to the company.

Satellite Image shows actual Scenario, judge by yourself.

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Views…

  • Here Lavasa Making Law as their defense.
  • State Govt. approved everything by Law.
  • Central govt. taking objections by Law.
  • Law can be made again , Law can be change….But what about Environment?

Some Of the Talks on this Issue.

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