October 26, 2021 10:06:46 am
The Supreme Court Monday sought the Centre’s reply on a plea challenging the proposed change in land use of a plot of land in the Central Vista area in connection with the construction of the official residence of the Prime Minister and the Vice-President.
A bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and C T Ravikumar was hearing a plea by Advocate Rajeev Suri challenging the change in land use of the plot from recreational area to residential.
Suri said that the said plot number 1 had earlier been provided for public recreational area also but that has been completely done away with and the land use has been converted to residential only.
This, he contended, “will deprive residents of Delhi and citizens of India of a vast chunk of highly treasured open and green space in the Central Vista area available for social and recreational activity” and that it is against Article 21, Right to Life, the right to enjoyment of a wholesome life.
Suri’s counsel submitted that the Centre had not demonstrated any public interest for the change in land use.
The bench then asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who appeared for the government, whether the recreational area will be transposed to some other place or transferred to some other plot.
Mehta responded that the recreational area could be shifted.
He, however, pointed out that there were also security concerns given that the Parliament as well as residences of PM, VP were coming up.
The bench then asked Mehta if he would file an affidavit.
Mehta responded that he would file it in three days.
The court then ordered that the respondents “may file a short affidavit to deal with this contention (raised by Suri) within a period of three days from today, including to justify the necessity for such notification”.
Suri had in 2020 challenged the Central Vista Project but the plea was dismissed by the SC paving the way for construction of the new Parliament building.
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