Kochi: The state government and the Kerala Coastal Zone Management Authority have decided to file an appeal before the apex court in the controversial DLF case. The High Court had on Wednesday asked DLF Builders to pay a fine of Rs 1 crore for constructing an apartment complex at Chilavannur violating the CRZ (Coastal Regulation Zone) laws. The state will file the appeal after getting a copy of the order, sources said. Over the years, the state had kept mum on the issue and the single bench had even criticised Kochi Corporation for violating the norms in the case.
The state feels that other violators would move the court and seek favourable orders in the wake of the division bench order. “We will file an appeal against the division bench order. I have not seen the order and am waiting to get a copy to finalise the matter,” Additional Advocate-General said. Another source in the state's legal team said if the government had decided not to challenge the order , it would have sent a wrong message. Mr A.V. Antony, a local resident, had filed the petition against the illegal construction made by DLF builders. Mr Antony claimed that the division bench had accepted all his contentions and imposed a fine of Rs 1 crore on DLF.
“The court accepted all my contentions but let off the builders by imposing a meagre fine. I have spent my precious time defending the case. I will move the apex court challenging the order,” he added. The single bench in December 2014 had asked the Kochi Corporation to demolish the flat complex that was built in violation of the CRZ Act on the banks of Chilavannoor backwaters. The court also asked DLF to stop all kinds of construction activities at the site.
Mr Charles George, president, Kerala Matsya Thozhilali Aikyavedi, said “it was unfortunate that the High Court judgment came at a time when another bench of the same court had registered a suo motu case against the encroachment of Vembanad lake.” The district collector has already constituted a special task force to demarcate the boundaries of the Vembanad lake. He alleged that the state and the central governments had shown serious lapses in the conduct of the DLF case....