PANAJI: The High Court of Bombay at Goa on Tuesday asked the state government as well as the litigants and lawyers to come up with an amicable solution over shifting of cases pertaining to Goa from Pune bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT), under its western zone jurisdiction, to the principal bench of the NGT at Delhi.
The court has also inquired about the availability of a location in case a Circuit Bench of the NGT is proposed to be set up in the state, as well as the viability of setting up such a bench.
It may be recalled that the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) by a notification issued on August 10, 2017, had excluded Goa from the jurisdiction of the Pune Bench of the NGT and brought it under the Delhi bench.
The High Court has asserted that access to justice should be at the doorstep of citizens. The Goa government is expected to file an affidavit in the matter on September 18. The next hearing in the matter is scheduled on September 25.
The High Court of Bombay at Goa on August 23 had taken suo moto cognisance of shifting of Goa’s jurisdiction from the Pune Bench of the National Green Tribunal to Delhi, and ordered status quo.
Interestingly, the Bharatiya Janata Party government headed by Laxmikant Parsekar, in 2015 had requested the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change to provide a Circuit Bench of the NGT for Goa, so that the petitioners may not have to travel to Pune.
The next BJP government, which came to power under Manohar Parrikar in March 2017 recommended on June 9, 2017 to the MoEFCC to change the jurisdiction of the NGT for Goa-related cases, from its Pune bench to the principal bench in Delhi.
Source:: The Navhind Times