At a time when the Kerala government is facing criticism from the Supreme Court for not complying with its order to demolish the four apartment complexes in Maradu, it has landed in yet another quandary.
The director of the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) has submitted a report stating that 66 high-rise buildings in the state, including hotels, resorts, hospitals and even big houses, are violating Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) rules.
The 66 buildings named by MoEF in connection with a Parliament question for violations across the state also includes the four apartment complexes slated for demolition in Maradu. “Ground truthing will be done now in the wake of the new developments,” a government officer told TNIE.
Though it’s a preliminary report, in the light of the recent Supreme Court order, a detailed examination will be done on the ground, the officer said.
STATE GOVT TO FILE AFFIDAVIT IN SC TODAY
The Kerala government will appoint a three-member committee chaired by not less than a retired judge to look into the actions on Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) violations in the state.
The state government, which will submit its affidavit to the Supreme Court on Friday, will also explain in detail the steps it will take to comply with the court’s order to demolish the four apartment complexes, including issuance of notices to around 10,000 buildings within a one-km-radius of the high-rise apartments in view of the fine dust, vibration and noise in the area on account of demolition as highlighted by the IIT-Madras report.
The state government will also tell oil companies who have pipelines in Maradu to take precautionary steps, ahead of the demolition.
The affidavit will also have details of the steps taken by Maradu municipality and Kerala Government in compliance with the Supreme Court order. The action plan has been prepared through Maradu Municipality. It will have details of 14 activities to be completed in 138 days.
The step starts with short-listing and inviting financial bid following Expression of Interest (EoI) for demolition by controlled implosion on September 24. Each step has a start date and an ending date. The site will be handed over to the successful bidder on October 11.
The time for demolition will be 90 days based on discussions with bidders. It will take another 30 days for removing debris and clearing the sites. The expected date of completion is February 9, 2020.
The affidavit will also talk about the steps taken to disconnect KWA, KSEB and BSNL connections and action taken to request the DGP to take necessary legal action against the builders.