Gujarat High Court today directed the Centre to constitute a new committee to probe alleged violation of environmental norms by Adani Group for a project at Kandla Port Trust (KPT) in the state.
A division bench of Justices Akil Kureshi and J B Pardiwala asked the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) to form an independent committee of experts to probe alleged environmental breach in Tuna dry bulk terminal project at KPT in Kutch district.
It also asked the Centre to file an affidavit stating whether environmental norms had been flouted or not in execution of the project awarded by Government-run KPT to Adani Group in 2012.
The HC was hearing a PIL filed last year by two Kutch- based citizens, Adam Gadh and Hamid Ismail Jaam, through their lawyer Hashim Qureshi, alleging the Group has not taken environmental clearance to construct the bulk jetty at KPT.
The petitioners have also alleged the Gujarat-based business conglomerate has not followed norms related to coastal regulation zone and filled the creeks and cut mangroves in the area, leading to environmental degradation.
Following this, the Union Government had last year formed an expert committee to probe the alleged contravention of green and other norms by the Group.
The committee gave its report in February this year, saying Adani Group had breached the norms. It also issued a notice under Environment Protection Act, directing the Group to stop its activities at KPT till it gets environmental nod.
After hearing the petitioners, the Court asked the Centre to form a new committee to look into the issue and posted the hearing on September 18.