Illegal gheri demolition: Odisha HC refuses to entertain intervention petitions

Earlier, the state government had submitted the draft policy on fishing in Chilika.
Odisha High Court
Odisha High Court

CUTTACK: The Orissa High Court has declined to entertain intervention petitions regarding orders issued by authorities for demolition of illegal structures and earthen gherries besides eviction of illegal brackish water shrimps, prawn farms and other fishery ponds from the periphery of Chilika lake.

The orders were issued to implement directions of the high court as part of the proceedings in the PIL on threat to ecology of Chilika lake and Bhitarkanika mangroves.

While disposing of 36 such intervention petitions recently, the division bench of Chief Justice Chakradhari Sharan Singh and Justice MS Raman said, “We make it clear that no intervention application assailing an action under the provisions of the Coastal Aquaculture Authority Act, 2005 and the Coastal Aquaculture Rules, 2005 shall be entertained in the present proceeding which is in the nature of PIL, if the same relates to an individual’s personal grievance.”

The bench said, “Certain orders were passed in the PIL proceeding consequent upon which the competent authorities, while implementing such orders, had initiated, and taken actions. Such actions, which adversely affect the individuals, were sought to be challenged in the present proceeding by filing the intervention applications. There are altogether 36 intervention applications which have been filed raising individual grievances.”

The intervention applications stand disposed of with a liberty to the intervenors-applicants to raise their grievances before appropriate forum in accordance with law, the bench added.

The bench has posted the PIL to June 25 for further consideration of the issue of a comprehensive policy on fishing in Chilika. The policy is expected to also address the rights of such non-fishermen societies who survive solely by fishing in Chilika lake.

Earlier, the state government had submitted the draft policy on fishing in Chilika. On May 20, the government had submitted that because of the general elections in the state, finalisation of the said policy had got delayed and, in any case, it shall be done.

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