NGT to CMDA: Stop Injambakkam beach work till central nod

The case pertains to the alleged removal of coastal dunes in Injambakkam for a beautification project. CMDA had denied that sand dunes were being levelled.
CMDA had submitted that it had started clearing the areas to start work on activities to attain the ‘Blue Flag’ certification.
CMDA had submitted that it had started clearing the areas to start work on activities to attain the ‘Blue Flag’ certification.(Photo | Martin Louis, EPS)

CHENNAI: The NGT southern bench on Tuesday ruled that Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) cannot continue with its ‘comprehensive shoreline development plan’ without getting an approval from the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC)

The case pertains to the alleged removal of coastal dunes in Injambakkam for a beautification project. CMDA had denied that sand dunes were being levelled.

NGT also ordered that CMDA will need to get an appropriate approval from the Tamil Nadu Coastal Zone Management Authority (TNCZMA) before conducting any other activity other than cleaning and removal of encroachments.

CMDA had submitted that it had started clearing the areas to start work on activities to attain the ‘Blue Flag’ certification. Such activities, like building portable toilet blocks, landscaping, lighting, etc are permitted in the CRZ area subject to maintaining 10 meters from the high-tide line.

However, the bone of contention was whether the MOEFCC has identified beaches in Chennai for the certification. The bench pointed out that no such beach in the stretch between Kasimedu and Akkarai in Chennai has been identified by the union ministry for this certification.

Hence, the CMDA could not carry out the activities under the guise of obtaining the certification, as on date. “Unless and otherwise the project proponent gets the coastline, for which, it aims at getting the Blue Flag Certification, identified by the appropriate authority, it may not be possible for it to do any kind of activity,” the bench said.

Though the TNCZMA had asked CMDA to explore the possibility of getting the certification for Injambakkam to Akkarai stretch, as on date there was no approval from the coastal authority, the bench noted.

Noting the CMDA counsel’s submission that the authority was carrying out cleaning work, the bench said they can do that and removal of encroachments, but prohibited them from carrying out any other work without getting approval from TNCZMA under CRZ notification or exemption from the MOEFCC.

Related Stories

No stories found.

X
The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com