Delhi Metro Phase 4: DMRC Gets Green Flag For Construction On Yamuna Floodplains

Delhi Metro Phase 4

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), last year said that phase 4 for Delhi Metro will be launched soon, which would cost Rs. 24,948.65 crore to build. Now, after a long wait, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has given a green flag to DMRC for the construction of a bridge on Yamuna Floodplains under the Delhi Metro Phase 4 project.

A simple graphical representation to explain what Floodplain (Flood Plain) is:

Floodplain

A bench that was headed by Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel, Chairperson, NGT, announced this order after observing the recommendations of the Principal Committee which stated that this project shall be approved if certain conditions are met.

The NGT has no assistance to any rival viewpoint(s) in order to deal with the issues in hands at present so as to indulge in any potential objection to legality – procedural or substantive – it said.

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The bench said, “Having regard to the nature of the project and opinion of the Principal Committee, we do not see any prima facie objection to the project. The same must, however, comply with legal requirements and procedures”.

The bench also said that in order to ensure additional environmental safeguards for Yamuna River and the river’s floodplains on activities and projects like this in the future, Cumulative Impact Assessment (CIA) must be carried out in addition to individual evaluation of projects on an environmental benchmark.

The CIA will be able to capture a much more comprehensive image of the impact of such projects and help in coming up with the necessary mitigation actions.

The bench said “The Principal Committee may also consider setting up of artificial wetlands, bio-diversity parks and other necessary mitigation measures, including phytoremediation at the mouth of drains leading to the river, at the cost of project proponents. The study may be conducted by Principal Committee, by apportioning the cost amongst project proponents based on the quantum of development and their environmental footprints”.

The Principal Committee recommended that all the necessary construction that will be required by DMRC should regard the floodplains and have minimum effects on it.

The committee has put certain conditions as well, which are:

  • “Restoration of the flood plain that may be impacted adversely or otherwise by the construction of bridge alignment in the Yamuna floodplain/ pillars”.
  • “he muck/debris generated should be disposed of scientifically and no dumping shall be allowed on the flood plains”.
  • “Compensation of the trees to be cut during construction/ operational phase of the project to be carried out by DMRC without fail”.

The Delhi Metro Phase 4 will connect Delhi with Noida, Gurugram, Faridabad, and Ghaziabad, and the cost of land for the phase 4 will be split between Centre and Delhi governments on 50 – 50 basis and will be applicable on three priority cooridors – R K Ashram to Janakpuri (West), Mukundpur to Maujpur, and Aerocity to Tughlakabad.

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