NOIDA: The demand to declare a 10km radius around Okhla bird sanctuary as protected has got louder. A petitioner filed a case in the National Green Tribunal on Monday warning that if the10km radius is not declared protected, Okhlasanctuary would die a slow death. TheGautamBudhNagar forest department had last year issued notices to 53 builders whose projects were falling within the said radius for not taking the mandatory environmental clearance.

The hearing before the tribunal in the matter is scheduled on July 11. The petitioner has made the Noida Authority CEO, district magistrate, senior superintendent of police, ministry of environment & forests, the Uttar Pradesh chief secretary, principal secretary of Uttar Pradesh department of forests, principal secretary of UP irrigation department and national board of wildlife respondents in the case.

When TOI repeatedly tried to contact Uttar Pradesh chief wildlife warden Rupak Dey for comments, the phone was disconnected. Attempts were made to contact district magistrate Kumar Ravikant Singh, but even he remained unavailable for comment.

“Noida Authority deals with the action plan and administration of all projects, but it has failed to protect wildlife in its jurisdiction,” the petition reads.

“It is unfortunate that wildlife is not being protected. With many real estate projects planned in the region, concretization is putting the ecology at risk,” said Gaurav Kumar Bansal, counsel for the petitioner.

Courtesy: THE TIMES OF INDIA

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