CHENNAI: A larger bench of the Madras High Court on Wednesday transferred the cases related to the eradication of invasive plants and tree species to a special division bench that has been hearing the forest and wildlife cases.
Heading the bench along with Justice N Sathish Kumar and Justice N Mala, Chief Justice Munishwar Nath Bhandari passed the orders to transfer the case filed by several litigants, including MDMK general secretary Vaiko.
The bench passed the direction on a request of Additional Advocate General J Ravindran.
The AAG submitted that the special division bench also had been passing several directions in connection with the eradication of invasive species and therefore, it will be convenient for the government to argue the case before a specific division bench.
Concurring with the submissions of the AAG, the CJ directed the registry to list the cases of Seemai Karuvelam eradication before the special bench.
“The division bench will monitor the process of eradicating juliflora and lantana on land and water bodies, ” the CJ held.
The AAG had also appraised the court about the actions taken by the government to remove the invasive species of flora. An affidavit was also submitted by the AAG explaining the action taken in this regard detailing the removal process and acres covered.
However, the CJ said, “though the government is submitting the details about the removal of juliflora, we are able to see it anywhere.” The judge further asked how many numbers of machines including JCBs are used to remove the invasive plants and trees.
Earlier in the day, an advocate named Srinath Sridevan complained to the CJ that the manual scavenging was going unchecked in the High Court premises despite several court orders banning the act. To this AAG Ravindran informed the bench that the subject will be taken up with the Chennai Corporation seeking immediate action.