NGT to resume crucial hearing on Art of Living three-day event from Tuesday

New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal will resume a crucial hearing on Tuesday on pleas seeking
cancellation of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's Art of Living three-day 'World Culture Festival' on the Yamuna flood plains to celebrate 35 years of the foundation.

A view of the material for pontoon bridge on River Yamuna. Naresh Sharma/Firstpost

A view of the material for pontoon bridge on River Yamuna. Naresh Sharma/Firstpost

A bench headed by NGT chairperson Swatanter Kumar will hear the matter in which Delhi Development Authority (DDA),
Uttar Pradesh and Delhi government will make their submissions with regard to grant of permission to the festival.

On 3 March, DDA had submitted that it had granted conditional permission for organising the event and had no
idea about the magnitude of the programme.

The DDA had denied the suggestion that it had provided 3.5 hectare of land for a parking lot on the banks of the
river and said it had only provided over 20 hectares for the recreational programme.

The NGT is also hearing a plea against the foundation's plan to release 'enzymes' into 17 drains joining Yamuna for
cleaning the river.

Earlier, the green panel had issued notices to the Delhi government, DDA and Art of Living Foundation on another plea seeking stoppage of ongoing construction on the flood plains.

It had also constituted an expert committee headed by Water Resources Secretary Shashi Shekhar to inspect the site
of the proposed festival.

Meanwhile, the Indian Army, which has built a pontoon bridge on the Yamuna for the festival, is likely to build one
more to ease movement of a large number of people expected to attend the controversy-ridden mega event.

The Art of Living foundation, which is organising the function, will have yoga and meditation sessions, peace
prayers by Sanskrit scholars and traditional cultural performances from India and abroad.

PTI


Updated Date: Mar 07, 2016 20:03 PM

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