NGT: Remove all structures encroaching on green belt in Vasundhara

Ashni Dhaor, Ghaziabad: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has ordered the Ghaziabad Municipal Corporation

(GMC) to ensure that all encroachments on the green belt in Vasundhara, between the Kanavani bridge and Sector 19, Vasundhara be removed.
The order came while the bench, headed by Justice Swantanter Kumar, disposed of a petition filed in the matter by Sharad Tiwari on behalf of Friends NGO on September 20. Tiwari is a resident of Noida.
The order states,”…learned counsel appearing for the State of UP and the Municipal Corporation submits that they would ensure that encroachments from the green belt in the stretch between Kanawani Puliya and Sector-19 Vasundhara, are removed, in accordance with law..”.
According to the petition, the green belt in Vasundhara which lies adjacent to Hindon canal and stretches from Kanavani bridge to sector 19, Vasundhara, is in a terrible condition. The petition was filed in October 2015.
The petition states,“The Vasundhara green belt is encroached upon by concrete structures that include religious structures as well and a large portion of it is being used for dumping garbage and polythene bags…”
The petition also states that despite repeated requests to the city administration to take cognizance of the deteriorating condition of the green belt, there has been no response.
“We had sent out email complaints to the municipal commissioner and the district magistrate of Ghaziabad to remove encroachments but to no avail,” Tiwari said.
On January 21 this year, the NGT sent a notice to the GMC seeking a reply from it on the condition of the green belts.
The reply given by the corporation stated that the area lies under the jurisdiction of irrigation department, Uttar Pradesh government and that the corporation has no role in matters of the green belt.
However on September 20, the GMC submitted affidavit contradicting this claim and agreed to ensure that the encroachments on the green belt are removed.
“We hope that the GMC complies with the order soon and the green belt is restored to its original condition. However, if it does not comply, we will file a contempt application in the court,” Tiwari said.