SC stays NGT order asking Delhi LG to head committee on Yamuna
The Supreme Court on Tuesday (July 11) stayed the National Green Tribunal (NGT) order that had asked the Delhi Lt Governor VK Saxena to head a high-level committee constituted for cleaning the Yamuna river.
A bench comprising Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud and Justices PS Narasimha and Manoj Misra agreed to hear the Delhi government’s plea against the January 19 order of the NGT and issued notice to the petitioner on whose application the tribunal had passed the order.
The NGT had constituted a high-level committee of authorities concerned in Delhi where pollution of Yamuna is higher (about 75 per cent) compared to other river basin states, and said, “We request the Lieutenant Governor, Delhi, who is Chairman of DDA and administrator of Delhi under Article 239 of the Constitution, to head the committee.”
Senior advocate Abhishek Singhvi, appearing for the Delhi government, referred to two paragraphs of the NGT order. “Issue notice. There shall be a stay of the operation of the direction issued on January 9, 2023 by the National Green Tribunal to the extent that the Lieutenant Governor has been directed to be a member of the committee and to chair it,” the apex court said, while adding that it was not staying the rest of the order.
Noting that substantial work remains unexecuted for the rejuvenation of River Yamuna, the NGT had formed the committee and requested the Delhi Lt Governor to head the committee. Contending that the LG is only a “figurehead” except for three subjects – police, public order and land – the Delhi government has in its plea before the top court sought directions to set aside the NGT order.
(With agency inputs)