The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Center to provide an affidavit on the issue of a proposed change in land use for a plot where the new official residence of the Vice President and Prime Minister has been identified as part of the ambitious Central Vista project in Lutens. Delhi.

The Central Vista renovation, announced in September 2019, envisages a new Tri-Parliament Building, with a capacity of 900 to 1,200 deputies, to be built by August 2022 when the country celebrates its 75th Independence Day. The Central Joint Secretariat is likely to be built by 2024 under the project covering a distance of 3 km from Rashtrapati Bhavan to India Gate in the national capital.

The main court was hearing a petition challenging the change of land use on plot number one from a recreational area to a residential area. The matter was brought to be heard before the panel of Judges AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar who asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who was representing the Centre, to give a short statement on the case.

The lawyer representing the petitioner said that the authorities showed no public interest in the change in the land use from recreational to residential land. Mehta told the court that the official residences of the vice president and prime minister were provided for in the plot.

So the public recreation area is not available now, seat asked Mehta, adding, will the public recreation area be moved to another location or moved to another plot. Mehta said the recreational area could be changed but also cited security concerns given that Parliament would come there.

The bench said what’s your stance, we’d like to know about it. I will have to take instructions, Mehta said, adding, given that Parliament and other things will appear nearby, from a security point of view, it would not be possible to have a recreation area in the vicinity.

The Board asked if it wished to provide a short written statement on the limited point raised in this matter. Mehta said he will provide an affidavit within three days. The court said that the defendants (the center and others) may submit a brief statement to deal with this dispute within three days from today, including justifying the necessity of the amendment, and publishing the order for the hearing on October 29.

In January of this year, the Supreme Court ruled, by a 2:1 majority, that the grant of environmental approval and notification of land use change for the construction of the new Parliament Building under the project was in effect. The Supreme Court ruling came in several appeals, including those against various permissions granted to the project by the authorities including the granting of an environmental permit and an indication of land use change.

The Supreme Court in June of this year rejected a separate petition challenging a Delhi High Court order that rejected a petition seeking to stop the construction of Central Vista in light of the COVID pandemic.

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