Goa excluded from NGT’s Pune bench jurisdiction
PANAJI: Goa has been excluded from the jurisdiction of the Pune bench of National Green Tribunal (NGT) and brought under the Delhi bench in an order issued by the ministry of environment, forests and climate change (MoEFCC).
The states of Gujarat and Maharashtrawill continue under the jurisdiction of Pune bench (west zone) of the green tribunal, but for Goan litigants, it will be back to Delhi after a gap of six years to pursue their environmental matters.
While MoEFCC issued the notification dated August 10, 2017, regarding the change, it was almost six years back on August 11, 2011, that the ministry had issued a notification, demarcating north, south, east and west zones with principal and regional benches.
Goan activists who were filing a chunk of the complaints regarding environmental matters before the Pune bench expressed disappointment about the jurisdictional change.
“This is a clear attempt to discourage us from taking up environmental matters,” an activist said.
The distance from Goa to Pune was hardly 450km, which was for the sake of convenience, but the central government has included Goa without any draft notification in the north zone, 1,872 km away, activists said. Some are planning to challenge the notification before the high court of Bombay at Goa shortly, sources said.