Ram Sethu won't be damaged in interest of nation: Centre to Supreme Court

Subramanian Swamy had filed PIL against ship channel project and had sought direction to the Centre that the Ram Sethu be not touched.

New Delhi: The Centre on Friday informed the Supreme Court that in the "interest of the nation", it will not damage the mythological Ram Sethu for its Sethusamudram Ship Channel project.

Ram Sethu connects India and Sri Lanka.

Instead, according to the government, they will look for an alternative route to implement the Sethusamudram Canal Project. The project is a shipping channel between India and Sri Lanka.

According to the affidavit filed by the Union Ministry of Shipping, the PIL filed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy against the Sethusamudram project can now be disposed off by taking note of its stand. They had submitted the affidavit to a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra that

The affidavit read, “That the government of India intends to explore an alternative to the earlier alignment of Sethusamudram Ship Channel project without affecting/damaging the Adam's Bridge/Ram Sethu in the interest of the nation.”

Speaking on behalf of the Centre, Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand, said that the Centre has filed the response in pursuance of the earlier directions and the PIL can now be disposed off.

Swamy had filed a PIL against the ship channel project and had sought direction to the Centre that the mythological Ram Sethu be not touched.

The Supreme Court, granted time to the Centre to elaborate whether it has taken a stand to cut through Ram Sethu for the Sethusamudram project last year.

It is the belief of millions of Hindus that the Ram Sethu was built by Lord Ram with help from an army of monkeys, to rescue his wife Sita from the demon king Ravana, described in the epic Ramayana.

The Ram Sethu or Adam's Bridge is a continuous stretch of limestone shoals that runs from Pamban Island near Rameshwaram in South India to Mannar Island off the northern coast of Sri Lanka.

The marine structures, around which legends have been woven have been think in the centre of controversy since the Sethusamudram shipping canal project was revealed.

Under the Sethusamudram project, a 83-km-long deep water channel would have been created linking Mannar with Palk Strait by extensive dredging and removal of the limestone shoals which constitute the Sethu.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle / PTI )
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