New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal has refused to entertain a petition challenging the environment clearance granted to 9,900 MW Jaitapur Nuclear Power Park in Maharashtra`s Ratnagiri district on the ground that the plea was time barred.
The Tribunal dismissed the plea of an NGO challenging the November 26, 2010 EC ranted by Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) to the project, saying the petition was filed after a delay of 294 days on September 17, 2011 and hence was "grossly barred by time".
As per the National Green Tribunal (NGT) Act, a plea can be filed within 30 days of passing of an order sought to be challenged and the Tribunal, to its satisfaction, can condone a further delay of 60 days.
"As stated earlier, this Tribunal being a statutory authority is bound by the provisions of the statute and cannot traverse beyond provisions of the NGT Act. Under Section-16 (relating to appellate jurisdiction of NGT) there is clear bar not to entertain appeal filed beyond 60 days," a bench headed by Tribunal`s Acting Chairperson Justice A S Naidu said.
"Though this Tribunal is liberal in condoning the delay, as and when it finds sufficient reasons and is not super-technical, but then being a statutory tribunal it cannot ignore the period stipulated in the statute.
"In view of the discussions made above, we are not inclined to condone the delay and dismiss this petition. Consequently, the appeal also stands dismissed," it added.
The plea was filed by Maharashtra-based NGO Janahit Seva Samiti contending that "project is likely to cause hazard to the environment as well as ecology".