NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed the Delhi government to release Rs 265 crore from the Environment Compensation Charge (ECC) for the construction of the Regional Rapid Transit
System corridor.The first phase of the project connecting Delhi with Meerut, 82.15-km corridor, is likely to cost Rs 31,632 crore. A division bench said the first-year share of the Delhi government in the project, which comes to Rs 265 crore, be released from the ECC within a week as the corridor is aimed at decongesting roads in the national capital.
The court was informed that the Centre’s share for the project was Rs 5,687 crore while Uttar Pradesh and Delhi have to dole out Rs 828 crore and Rs 1,138 crore, respectively. The bench said the Delhi government would release its first-year cost of Rs 65 crore for the project from the ECC in this financial year. “We direct the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) to make budgetary allocation from next year for the RRTS project,” the bench said. “In our opinion, the GNCTD is legally and constitutionally bound to make available the fund.”
Advocate Aparajita Singh, assisting the court as an amicus curiae in pollution-related matters, told the court that `1,106 crore fund under ECC was lying with the Delhi government and the Environment Pollution Control Authority has already said that the first-year share of Delhi government can be given from it.
Singh said the first-year share of Delhi is Rs 265 crore out of which Rs90 crore was tax which would be refunded later. The bench made it clear that Rs 90-crore tax, which would be refunded later, should be deposited in the ECC. The court said that though it was giving one-week time to the Delhi government to release the fund, the same should be done within three days.
“We are giving you seven days time but the order should be complied with within three days,” the bench told a Delhi government officer present at the court. Of the 82.15-kilometre-long corridor, the national capital will have a 13-kilometre section with three stations at Sarai Kale Khan, New Ashok Nagar and Anand Vihar. Agency inputs
Faster, smoother and comfortable travel
The project aims at providing a speedy and pollution-free transit system, connecting the regional nodes of the national capital region (NCR), making long distances shorter and convenient to travel, for citizens and regular passengers.