Construction above three floors in Munnar restricted for two weeks
The Special Bench on Tuesday directed the Idukki district collector to furnish the disaster management plan of the district.
KOCHI: A Division Bench of the Kerala High Court on Tuesday restricted the construction of buildings above three floors in the Munnar area for two weeks. The court imposed a stay on processing building permit applications for more than three floors till the next posting date of the petitions.
The Bench issued the interim order on a batch of petitions filed by One Earth One Life and others against encroachments and illegal constructions in Munnar and other areas in the Idukki district.
The petitioner also sought to declare a moratorium on all land deals in Devikulam, Udumbanchola and Peermade taluks in the district and to stop all constructions sanctioned at Chinnakkanal, Pallivasal, Devikulam, Udumbanchola and Peermade taluks until an inquiry is held into the genuineness of the title deeds.
The Division Bench headed by Chief Justice SVN Bhatti had earlier ordered to constitute of a Special Bench for considering the cases and observed that “Present Public Interest Litigations were taken up not only to remedy the situation in Idukki district but also to prevent further damage and deterioration to the environment.”
The Special Bench on Tuesday directed the Idukki district collector to furnish the disaster management plan of the district. The district disaster management authority (DDMA) of Wayanad had imposed certain restrictions on the height of buildings in the areas and directed secretaries of all panchayats, municipalities and other authorities in the district not to issue permits for the construction of any building exceeding the height limits. The same restriction could be imposed in Munnar as, just like Wayanad, Munnar is also a very ecologically sensitive area.
The court also appointed an amicus curiae to inquire into the matter and to assist the court. The court asked the amicus curiae to look into the encroachments that have been identified, and submit suggestions for recovering the land after evicting encroachers.