Thursday, May 7, 2009

Alas! Work Started at Siri Fort Sports Complex

Alas! Work Started at Siri Fort Sports ComplexFor The Sake of India’s Prestige in the World Community SC Okays complex at Siri Fort

The Supreme Court on Monday removed all hurdles for the construction of the basketball and squash facilities at Siri Fort area in South Delhi for the 2010 Commonwealth Games saying it did not want India to be viewed by the world community as unfit for the prestigious sporting event.

Keeping open for adjudication in future the alleged environmental transgression by the DDA, which cut down as many as 891 trees to clear the area for the construction of the sports facilities, the SC said if any more trees were to be cut, it has to be done in consultation with the central empowered committee (CEC).

What appeared to weigh additionally with the special forest bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and justices Arijit Pasayat and S H Kapadia were the recent shifting of IPL T20 tournament from India to South Africa followed by Australian pullout from Davis Cup in Chennai.

‘‘We do not want people to say India is unsafe for Commonwealth Games. We will deal with the environmental concerns after the Games are over,’’ the bench said much to the relief of additional solicitor general Amarendra Saran, who appeared for DDA. Amicus curiae ADN Rao and counsel M L Lahoty pointed out to SC that both the CEC report and an independent assessment of the facilities by town planner Charles Correa had termed the cutting down of a large number of fullgrown trees as mindless and that DDA could have selected an alternative site.