Polavaram row: NGT seeks MoEF report on public hearing

Bhubaneswar: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Monday asked the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) to submit report on the implementation of its public hearing and stop work order at Polavaram project site.

The Tribunal asked the ministry to submit a status report within two weeks on the project and the Office Memorandum issued by it for stopping the project.

“They (MoEF) have extended the stop work order by four times for abeyance. The Ministry has not placed its stand properly before the NGT on it. The NGT asked the Ministry to file an affidavit afresh on the progress of the public hearing in Chhattisgarh and Odisha” said an NGT counsel.

The Ministry had issued stop-work order in 2011 due to non-compliance of the condition for environment clearance, that is, by conducting a public hearing in Chhattisgarh and Odisha.

But the Environment Ministry last year decided to keep the stop work order in abeyance for a year, which expired in June this year.

The next hearing is scheduled for September 19.

Polavaram, which the Andhra Pradesh government claims is the “lifeline of the state”, has been declared as a national project under the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014.