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Environment Ministry seeks time to reply Delhi High Court

The bench, thereafter, suggested that the ministry can continue processing the suggestions, while keeping the window open for some further time to receive more.

Published: 30th June 2020 08:50 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th June 2020 08:50 AM   |  A+A-

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By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Union Environment Ministry on Monday sought a day’s time to inform the Delhi High Court about the extension of deadline for giving objections and suggestions to the draft Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) notification, 2020.  

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan said there was ambiguity in the Environment Ministry’s May 8 notification, extending the time for giving objections and suggestions to the draft EIA 2020, as it mentions a further period of 60 days and also that the window closes on June 30.

The ministry, represented by Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Maninder Acharya and Centre standing counsel Anurag Ahluwalia, told the bench that intent was to extend the period only till June 30. The ASG said the draft EIA 2020 was published on April 11 and 60 days from then was to expire on June 11, but in view of the COVID-19 pandemic it was decided to extend the period till June 30. She also said that till date over 1,000 suggestions have come in.

The bench, thereafter, suggested that the ministry can continue processing the suggestions, while keeping the window open for some further time to receive more. The ASG said she will take instructions from the ministry with regard to the court’s suggestion.

Court says ambiguity in ministry notice

The High Court said there was ambiguity in Environment Ministry’s May 8 notification, extending time for giving objections,  suggestions to the draft EIA 2020 as it mentions a further period of 60 days and also that the window closes on June 30. The draft was published on April 11 and 60 days from then was to expire on June 11.

(With PTI inputs)

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