| Greens cheer as Esselís work at Gorai
TIMES NEWS NETWORK
Mumbai: Fishermen at Gorai are heaving a sigh of relief and the city
greens are excited too. Thanks to a petition filed by the Gorai fisherfolk,
the Bombay high court has restrained Subhash Chandraís Essel Group
from undertaking any further construction of the proposed Pagoda,
v i p a s s a n a meditation centre and m o t o r abl e road bang
in the middle of m a n g rove s around Esselworld.
In an ad-interim order on Wednesday, a division bench of Justices
H L Gokhale and S C Dhamadhikari put a temporary halt to all construction
that was permitted on the basis of permissions already received from
the police and the polluton control board.
The Gorai Machchimar Sahkar Sanstha co-operative society limited,
an organisation of the local fishermen, filed the petition after realising
that bunds created by the Essel Group for construction purposes was
cutting off water supply to the dense mangroves. Their petition said
that the Essel Group wanted to build a road and a meditation centre
where 10,000 people were expected. All the development would hamper
the fishing activity in the area as water would recede further and
hundreds of locals could be deprived of a living, the f i s h e r
m e n pleaded.
Ap a r t from the future survival of the mangroves, the fishermen
were concerned about the effect of the construction on the existing
water supply scarcity in Gorai village. The locals have been fighting
for years for adequate supply of drinking water. They have also been
protesting against the recent conversion of the area into an entertainment
and tourist zone.
Esselgroup will have to file its reply to the petition by June when
the matter will next come up for hearing.