NGT tells real estate firm to pay Rs 3.29 cr damages

Hence, the bench, as per assessment made by the joint committee directed the builder to pay Rs 3.29 crore environmental compensation for going ahead with construction without obtaining EC.
NGT tells real estate firm to pay Rs 3.29 cr damages

CHENNAI: Rejecting the plea seeking exemption from prior Environmental Clearance (EC), the Southern Bench of National Green Tribunal (NGT) directed Arun Excello Construction LLP, a realestate firm, to pay Rs 3.29 crore as environmental compensation to the State Pollution Control Board.

As per the application, the firm had committed many violations while constructing 198 residential apartments – Arun Excello Atana – in Vandalur-Walajabath Road. Residents began facing overflow of sewage water in 2018 due to multiple complexes ‘located in the area. The application noted that sewage water would be stagnated on the road, with little to no intervention from the builder to rectify the situation.

Justice K Ramakrishnan and expert member Satyagopal Korlapati rejected the plea filed by the builder for seeking prior EC before construction as it was an independent project. “The project will be treated as an expansion of an earlier project taken by the same builder and not as an independent one. And overall, the expanded project capacity exceeds 20,000 square metre needing EC,” observed the Tribunal.

Hence, the bench, as per assessment made by the joint committee directed the builder to pay Rs 3.29 crore environmental compensation for going ahead with construction without obtaining EC.

Lastly, the Tribunal, taking note of any such independent building project, said, “Whenever building projects are planned adjacent to another complex, the respective licensing authorities should consider the impact of the project though EC may not be required for projects below 20,000 sq m.”

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