Engineers' body serves notice on state

Bid by LIT to convert green belt into parking area

Engineers' body serves notice on state

Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, November 29

Opposing the move by the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) to convert a green belt (park) located in front of house nos 247-G to 264-G in the Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar colony into a parking area and laying interlocking tiles on the land, the Council of Engineers (CoE) has served a notice to the state through the Chief Secretary and others, including the LIT Chairman, saying the act was against the directions made by the apex court as well as the National Green Tribunal (NGT).

The CoE , through its president Kapil Arora, has made the submission that green belts, parks and recreation facilities were places that people visit to remain healthy and stay fit.

Citing findings of studies made by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, he said creating, improving and promoting places to be physically active could improve individual and community health and result in a 25 per cent increase of residents who exercise at least three times per week.

Arora further mentioned that the quality of air in the city was deteriorating since the past many years and industries as well as commercial development was going at a rapid speed. Already, illegal colonies as well as unplanned industrial areas were lacking green belts and parks. Further, due to no checks on residential buildings being used for commercial activities, there was already an increase in the movement of vehicles in the locality, causing an increase in air pollution too.

The CoE president said in the notice that in an earlier petition filed by the body with the NGT (OA 168 of 2021) against illegal conversion of green belt into 33 plots and construction of a road directions were issued to the Principal Secretary of the Local government Department which said: “We are of the view that the issue raised can be examined on merits by the Principal Secretary, Department of Local Bodies, Punjab, in coordination with the LIT, which may take a decision expeditiously and as far as possible within two months.”

Asserting that in the wake of directions of the Supreme Court and the NGT, it was clear that the LIT was working in contrary to all such directions and provisions by its act of converting designated park into a parking area for vehicles, the CoE pleaded that the Trust be immediately restrain from any such act of fixing of interlocking tiles in the designated park, failing which the petitioner could move the NGT for redressal of the legitimate grievance.

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