NGT directs DM Mathura to further act against illegal encroachments on Yamuna riverbed & floodplains

Petitioner Akash Vashishtha had alleged threat to the environment, on account of illegal construction of road by UP PWD on Yamuna river bed in Vrindavan, Mathura between Shringarvat and Keshi Ghat

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In his application, Vashishtha had alleged threat to the environment, on account of illegal construction of metalled road by Uttar Pradesh Public Works Department on the river bed of Yamuna in Vrindavan, Mathura between Shringarvat and Keshi Ghat. 

In a landmark order passed on May 5, on a petition by environmentalist Akash Vashishtha, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the district magistrate of Mathura to further act against encroachments on Yamuna riverbed & floodplains in Vrindavan.

His application had mentioned that the road was constructed in the river bed of river Yamuna in Vrindavan using construction rubble and debris and was further being blacktopped with bitumen. He had also alleged the existence of illegal constructions including multi-storeyed buildings that had come up on the active floodplains and riverbed of the Yamuna in the holy town of Vrindavan.

A report was submitted to the NGT by the DM Mathura on March 5, alongwith the report of the Mathura Vrindavan Development Authority (MVDA) stating that the area was in the control of the Irrigation Department and hence no construction was allowed on the land.

The report also mentioned the existence of temporary huts on the piece of land.

However, the NGT noted that pictures annexed to the report do show constructions which may call for further action. The NGT also directed the DM “to devise an appropriate mechanism to ensure that no such constructions take place in the flood plain zone so that the flow of the river is not in any manner adversely affected.”

Speaking to delhincrnews.in Vashishtha said that the green court has also granted him the liberty to present all relevant facts to the DM in the meantime.

The court has further directed the DM to submit yet another action taken report by August 31.

By Prasoon Pant