THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: With the Coastal Zone Management Authority submitting before the High Court that CRZ clearance has not been issued to DLF flats at Chilavanoor in Kochi, the State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA), which originally issued the clearance, would soon submit its response on the issue before the court, along with the State Government.
The State Environment Department has already initiated the process of preparing its response to be filed before the court in the issue. Meanwhile, top officials with the SEIAA are of the view that the authority’s decision on issuing environmental clearance can be questioned only before the National Green Tribunal.
‘’The State Environment Impact Assessment Authority does not come under the State Government and hence decisions by the government are not binding on the authority. If there are differences of opinion with the clearance issued by SEIAA, it should be brought before the authority only. And its decisions can be questioned before the Green Tribunal only,” said Additional Chief Secretary P K Mohanty, member secretary of SEIAA.
On Friday, the Kerala Coastal Zone Management Authority (KCZMA) had submitted before the High Court that clearance under CRZ (Coastal Zone Regulation) norms has not been issued to the project. The KCZMA pointed out that the Kochi Corporation violated the law by issuing building permit to the project. They further pointed out that the construction carried out by violating the norms cannot be regularised. Meanwhile, the SEIAA maintains that its clearance was issued after a detailed inspection by the officials and no violations were found. With the issue creating a furore in the Assembly recently, the Chief Secretary had submitted a report to the government saying that the clearance was issued against the norms.