Contempt suit against Sri Sri Ravi Shankar for 'disrespect' to NGT

With his Art of Living (AoL) Foundation yet to pay the major chunk of 'environment compensation' for its cultural fest on the Yamuna floodplains, spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has been slapped with a contempt suit for 'alleged disrespect shown by him to the orders of National Green Tribunal (NGT)'.

IANS May 06, 2016 12:58:28 IST
Contempt suit against Sri Sri Ravi Shankar for 'disrespect' to NGT

New Delhi: With his Art of Living (AoL) Foundation yet to pay the major chunk of "environment compensation" for its cultural fest on the Yamuna floodplains, spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has been slapped with a contempt suit for "alleged disrespect shown by him to the orders of National Green Tribunal (NGT)".

The matter will come up for hearing before the Principal Bench of NGT headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar on 10 May.

Advocate Sanjay Parikh moved the application on Thursday on behalf of environmentalist Manoj Misra in the NGT on Thursday. Misra had filed cases in the NGT against AoL for violating environment laws.

Contempt suit against Sri Sri Ravi Shankar for disrespect to NGT

File image of Sri Sri Ravishankar. Image courtesy: Art of Living website

Parikh in his application said, "It is being filed to draw the attention of the Tribunal to the gross disrespect shown in the public domain by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar — Chairman of Art of Living (AoL) Foundation, by casting aspersions on the Tribunal and the dispensation of justice done by it under the Rule of Law."

He added that statements issued by Sri Sri "tends to interfere with the administration of justice and lowers the authority of this Tribunal".

Referring to some media reports, Parikh suggested that AoL has delayed the deposition of Rs 4.75 crore of "remaining environment compensation" imposed by the NGT despite the fact that "the founder of AoL heads over Rs 234 crore worth of assets, with over Rs 81 crore in latest revenues from the United States, United Kingdom and the Netherlands alone".

The NGT had imposed an environment compensation of Rs 5 crore on the AoL for the destruction its event, World Culture Festival (WCF), had caused to the ecology at the fragile Yamuna floodplains.

The AoL cited its inability to pay the huge amount being a charitable organisation and deposited only Rs 25 Lakh on 11 March, the day the WCF was to kick off.

It had pleaded to the tribunal for more time to deposit the remaining environment compensation.

Responding to its plea, the NGT had extended the deadline further to three weeks, which too lapsed on 1 April while AoL is yet to pay the balance amount.

On the other side, Akshama Nath, counsel for AoL, told IANS: "The foundation will respond to the suit in the court if at all it gets accepted."

She maintained that when AoL had returned the land to the Delhi Development Authority, it was cleaner and greener in comparison to what the foundation had received when it held the event.

Chief spokesperson of the AoL Sonia Madhok in a statement to IANS said: "We would like to state at the outset that this is absolutely untrue."

She surprisingly maintained "Art of Living has never claimed that it does not have Rs 5 crore".

"We were unable to furnish the full sum on the very day (11 March) and sought some time from the court to pay the remaining amount. Subsequently, the Art of Living, following due process of law, asked for a change in modality of payment," she said.

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar baits critics, agrees World Culture Festival is his private party as 'entire world is my family'
India

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar baits critics, agrees World Culture Festival is his private party as 'entire world is my family'

At the inaugural session of the three-day event, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar said it was in our DNA to "care for and love" nature.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's event 'completely destroyed' Yamuna floodplains: NGT panel report
India

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's event 'completely destroyed' Yamuna floodplains: NGT panel report

NGT appointed panel said that Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's Art of Living (AOL) Foundation "completely destroyed" the Yamuna floodplains

We haven't damaged Yamuna floodplains ecology: Art of Living Foundation
India

We haven't damaged Yamuna floodplains ecology: Art of Living Foundation

The Art of Living Foundation said it has paid the Rs 5-crore compensation imposed by the NGT but maintained it did not cause any damage to the Yamuna floodplains