Punjab

HIGH COURT RESTRAINED GRAM PANCHAYATS FROM CONDUCTING AUCTIONS OF TREES TILL EXISTING POLICY ON THE ISSUE IS REVIEWD

October 19, 2021 12:13 PM

Chandigarh- (Subhash Jindal)

Punjab Government restrains Gram Panchayats from conducting auctions of trees till the existing policy on the issue is reviewed: The decision HAS BEEN taken by Government in view of orders of Hon’ble High Court and NGT on two petitions: 

Director, Rural Development and Panchayats has issued an order dated 11.10.2021, to all Deputy Directors, DDPOs, and BDPOSs. In its letter, the Director has referred to stay order dated 20.9.2021,in CWP-PIL-162-2021 (H.C.Arora v. State of Punjab), wherein it was directed that “meanwhile, no trees shall be cut in the area concerned without the leave of the Court.” 

“On the subject of alleged illegal felling of 2058 trees in the premises of the Faridkot Coop. Sugar Mills Limited, we direct the PCCF Punjab to look into the grievance and take remedial measures, as may be found necessary, including coercive measures for enforcement of rule of law.” 

Reference has also been made to an order dated June 4th,2021 filed by Gurpreet Singh Chandbaja and others v. State of Punjab, ( through the undersigned.),which was to the following effect:- 

“On the subject of alleged illegal felling of 2058 trees in the premises of the Faridkot Coop. Sugar Mills Limited, we direct the PCCF Punjab to look into the grievance and take remedial measures, as may be found necessary, including coercive measures for enforcement of rule of law.” 

It is worth noticing that in CWP-PIL-162-2021, the Gram Panchayats of 3 villages, namely, SABOR (Rup Nagar District),Jatoli (Rup Nagar District) and Dulmiwal (Hoshiarpur District) were restrained from cutting trees standing in their areas.

Recently, the High Court , in another PIL filed by lawyer H.C. Arora, has vide order dated September 27th, 2021 , restrained the Gram Panchayat of village Rampura Taprian (Block-Majri) (Distt-SAS Nagar) from cutting trees standing in its area without the leave of the High Court. 

The Director has stated in his letter that Government is reviewing its existing policy for selling trees, and has therefore, restrained the Gram Panchayats from auctioning any trees, or cutting any trees till further orders. The Government decision has come as a great achievement for environment lovers of Punjab, who are hailing and welcoming it

 
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