September 9, 2021 10:09:52 am
The Madras High Court on Wednesday directed the State Chief Secretary to take genuine steps to protect the water bodies and forests and the coastal regions of Tamil Nadu, so that the future generations find the state habitable and can survive here.
“It cannot be a piecemeal solution pertaining to one matter or one area or one waterbody, though the aggregate has to take care of the individual,” the first bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice P D Audikesavalu, said Wednesday.
The bench was passing further interim orders on a batch of PIL petitions, seeking to remove the encroachments on water ways, water bodies, lakes and in the forests.
One of the petitioners complained of a dumping ground created at one end of the waterbody and incinerators being put in place within the area earmarked as waterbody in the revenue records.
The bench said that the State should re-visit such aspects of the matter and file a status report indicating how the dumping area would be removed and justify the setting up of the incinerators within the area covered by the waterbody, if indeed they have been set up at such a place.
The bench recalled the devastation caused by the floods in 2015. The floods were predicted in the city because the channels allowing the rainwater to drain out had been blocked, particularly around this city. It might have been a mild portender of future calamities, the bench warned.
“It is not for the court to interfere in the executive functioning or direct the executive to do this or that, but when reports abound complaining of what the Cooum river has now become or the Buckingham Canal has been reduced to, there has to be some concern shown by the State to take appropriate measures. measures. At the end of the day, development has to be sustainable and if the pandemic has taught us a lesson, it is that the human species may not yet be smart enough to beat nature and it is imperative that humans coexist with nature and other plant and animal life,” the bench said and posted the matter for further hearing on September 15.
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