NGT panel to ascertain cost of damage by AOL

The National Green Tribunal has ordered its experts committee to ascertain the cost of reparations needed to fix the damage caused to the Yamuna floodplain in Delhi by the earlier Art of Living event by September 27, when the tribunal will hear the case again. At the same time, both, the organisation headed by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and the petitioners have been given time to send their views in favour or against the experts committee report, which held Art of Living responsible for serious damage.

The Art of Living organisers have accused the NGT’s expert committee, headed by the water resources secretary of the Union government of bias and malafide intent in not only public forums but also in a formal application before the tribunal.     nitin sethi

The committee, headed by senior government official, the water resources secretary with several scientists on board, including one from a government institute, NEERI had concluded that serious damage had been caused to river’s flood plains on the site where AOL held an event.

But, in their report, dated July 28 it did not ascertain the cost of fixing the damage done at the event site, claiming it would require a detailed exercise considering the extensive reparation required.

On August 18, after the adverse report became public, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar tweeted, “We will expose all the lies of the NGT expert committee and their malicious intentions. On his website, he then went on to accuse the water resources secretary and his team members of malafide intent and pre-meditated bias and conflict of interest.

The AOL has also submitted a detailed report that it got prepared, asking the NGT to go with it instead. AOL’s report said no damage had been done at the site.

The NGT’s expert committee, besides the water resources secretary of the union government, comprises of a professor on hydrology from IIT Delhi, an expert associate professor on civil engineering from IIT Roorkee, a head of the environment restoration department of Delhi Univeristy , a retired professor of aquatic ecology in JNU, a former central defence accountant besides the senior scientist of government’s premier institute NEERI.

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