Kerela Govt cancels clearance to DLF project

As Opposition LDF in Kerala Assembly today slammed the Congress-led UDF regime of showing 'undue favour' in regularisation of a flat complex built by DLF in Kochi allegedly violating CRZ norms, the government said the clearance has been quashed and the Chief Secretary asked to look into the matter.

Raising the issue, CPIM-led Left Democratic Front members, who later staged a walkout over the matter, alleged corruption and political favouritism in giving "hasty clearance" to the project and sought to link it to Robert Vadra, son-in-law of Congress President Sonia Gandhi.

In reply to the notice, both Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Minister for Environment Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan said the clearance order given by Environment Department in April last had been quashed and the Chief Secretary has been asked to look into all aspects and file a report within five days.

Chandy took objection to opposition members mentioning the name of Vadra, husband of Priyanka Gandhi. In an apparent move to pre-empt the LDF charge, Radhakrishnan said the government yesterday itself took a decision to quash the order of clearance and asked the Chief Secretary to inquire into the matter on a complaint it received from Congress MLA T N Prathapan and file a report.

He also made it clear that it was not the policy of the government to allow resort mafia and realtor's to occupy backwaters of the state. Chandy said the government would take a stern action on the matter after getting the Chief Secretary's report, but reminded the LDF that the proposal for the project came to the government in 2007 and was given first clearance a year later when it (LDF) was in power.

Earlier, seeking to move the motion, P Sreeramakrishnan (CPI-M) said the State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA) on April 28 last quashed an order of Kerala Coastal Zone Management Authority (KCZMA) to stop the project of DLF and setting up a three-member committee to study the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) violation of the company. He also said SEIAA directive to withdraw the order to stop the project was conveyed to Kochi Corporation the next day itself to facilitate the regularisation of the DLF flat project at Vyttilla on the banks of Chillavanor river.

Leader of the Opposition V S Achuthanandan (CPIM) wanted to know whether the government would demolish the building and restore the place to its original form.

C Divakaran, CPI leader in the House, demanded that the government pull down the building constructed violating rules if it was sincere in its approach of preserving environment. Divakaran also asked why the government became so nervous when the name of Vadra was mentioned in connection with the project.

He said it was a very important matter which needed to be discussed in the House. With the reply of Chief Minister and the Environment Minister, Speaker G Karthileyan refused leave for the motion leading to the walkout by LDF members.


Read more about: govt, dlf, sonia gandhi
Story first published: Wednesday, June 18, 2014, 15:10 [IST]
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