HYDERABAD: In a relief to the Telangana government and the management of Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited, the High Court on Thursday dismissed the petitions on alignment of Corridor-III _ Greenlands-Shilparamam stretch _ of the metro rail project.
A division bench, comprising chief justice KJ Sengupta and justice PV Sanjay Kumar, pronounced its judgment on a plea by the Greenlands, Ameerpet, Madhuranagar, Yousufguda, Srikrishna Nagar Joint Action Committee and 20 other individuals, including residents and owners of various establishments in the areas.
The bench made it clear that it was an issue to be dealt with by experts and there was no need for public debate. On March 15, 2012, a single judge had stayed the work on the corridor following the petition which said that an expert agency, which had conducted a detailed survey in 2003, took the view that it was not at all feasible to take metro rail between Jubilee Hills Check Post and Greenlands. The petitioners alleged that the project was modified only to serve the commercial needs of the operator and, in the name of establishing railway stations, the agency was going to establish shopping malls and that would adversely affect them. The realignment would result in demolition of several structures owned by them and would adversely affect their businesses in the area, they pointed out.
The government said the project was being executed in accordance with the approval and sanctioned alignment as notified in the revised master plan which was approved in 2010.
The government entered into an agreement with L&T for execution of the project in three corridors _ Shilparamam to Nagole, Jubilee Bus Station to Charminar and Miyapur to Chaitanyapuri.
Aggrieved with the single judge’s order staying the work, the government and Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited (HMRL) filed an appeal contending that the plea of the petitioners that there existed an alignment through LV Prasad Hospital to Punjagutta and Green Lands was incorrect. The only route that was studied and finalised for that sector is the one through Srikrishnanagar, Yellareddyguda and Ameerpet and the project is being executed in accordance with the AP Municipal Tramways (Construction, Operation and Maintenance) Act, 2008, they contended.
The bench held that the metro rail alignment was an issue to be dealt with by experts. Just because the word ‘rail’ was used, it could not be said that the Indian Railways Act was applicable and the application of AP Tramways Act was wrong, it added. “Before finalising the route there was consultation with public representatives and the law does not envisage public to be heard and objections considered at all stages,” the bench noted.