NEW DELHI/KOCHI: The Supreme Court will pass a detailed order in the demolition of apartment complexes in Maradu on Friday even as it pulled up Kerala chief secretary Tom Jose for the rising number of illegal buildings across the state.
Justice Arun Mishra, who headed the SC bench, asked the Chief Secretary how long it would take to demolish the apartment complexes. The Kerala government had filed an affidavit before the Supreme Court on Friday in which Chief Secretary Tom Jose tendered his "unqualified apology" and said the government had no intention to violate the SC order.
Justice Mishra said the court can make out the state government's intention from the way it has filed the affidavit. "You are in patent breach of law. Your attitude is of defiance," he said.
Stating that Kerala was "playing with nature", Justice Mishra mentioned the massive loss of lives lost in the floods during 2018. "Illegal structures are still coming up....", he said.
The Supreme Court, in its order on May 8, asked the state government to raze down five apartment complexes, which overlooked the Vembanad Lake, for violating the Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) rules by September 8. The apartment complexes are Holy faith H2O (an 18 storey building complex built by Holy faith Builders), Alfa Serene (Twin Towers) - 16 storey - by Alfa Ventures; Jain Coral Cove -16 storey - by Jain Housing and Golden Kayaloram - 16 storey- by K P Varkey. The fifth apartment complex V S Builders Holiday Heritage is yet to be constructed.
"It seems like we have almost reached an end of legal options. As curative petition is still under consideration of the apex court, we are hopeful of a positive result from the full bench of Supreme Court," said Issac K, resident of Holyfaith H2O apartment.
"Justice Arun Mishra was fully conscious of the large-scale CRZ violation across the state. He realised that it is not just a case of five apartments in Maradu alone. He criticised the Chief Secretary for the lack of clarity in the procedure mentioned in the compliance report and elaborated his point of view on the current scenario in Kerla in the post-flood situation. We are optimistic about a realistic decision in the matter," said Mathew Kurian, a resident of Alfa Ventures, who was present at SC during the judgement.