NGT holds Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's Art of Living Foundation responsible for damaging Yamuna floodplains
The tribunal refused to impose any further environment compensation on the AoL and said the amount of Rs 5 crore which was submitted by it earlier would be used for the restoration of the floodplains.
NEW DELHI: The National Green Tribunal on Thursday held Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s Art of Living Foundation responsible for damaging the Yamuna floodplains by holding the World Cultural Festival in March 2016.
“We hold the AoL responsible for damaging the Yamuna floodplains in terms of the report submitted by the expert committee,” the bench, headed by NGT chairperson Swatanter Kumar, said.
However, the bench did not impose any further penalty on the foundation and said the earlier fine of Rs 5 crore imposed on AoL would be used in restoring the Yamuna floodplains.
“If the restoration cost exceeds Rs 5 crore, it would be recovered from AoL. However, if the cost is lesser than Rs 5 crore, the remaining amount will be returned to the foundation,” the bench said and added that the floodplain should not host any activity that damages the environment.
The green tribunal also directed the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) to assess the damage and estimate the cost of restoration based on the expert panel’s recommendation.
The NGT also came down on the DDA for failing to discharge its duty to protect the floodplains but did not impose any fine.
The AoL has said that it will go to the Supreme Court against the verdict.
The green tribunal was hearing a petition filed by Manoj Misra, who claimed that the AoL event, held between March 11 and 13, 2016 had severely damaged the Yamuna floodplains and sought its restoration.