The project on the premises will not hurt the environment, additional attorney general says
The High Court on Sunday rejected a writ petition challenging tree felling at the historic Suhrawardy Udyan for commercial establishments.
The virtual bench of Justice Farah Mahbub and SM Moniruzzaman turned down the petition.
Lawyer Syeda Rizwana Hasan represented the petitioners while Additional Attorney General Sheikh Mohammad Morshed stood for state.
“This is one of the mega projects of the government and no establishment will be built there on a commercial basis. The government is implementing the HC directive issued in 2009,” said Additional Attorney General Sheikh Mohammad Morshed.
The project is being implemented without harming the environment by following the report of a 6-member committee formed in this regard, he said.
On September 13, the court fixed Sunday for the final hearing on the writ.
On May 9, six organisations and an individual filed the writ petition to stop tree felling at Suhrawardy Udyan.
The petitioners are the Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA), Association for Land Reforms and Development (ALRD), Nijera Kori, Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST), Bangladesh Poribesh Andolon (BAPA), Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK) and architect Mobassher Hossain.
The petitioners also sought issuance of a rule seeking explanation as to why the cutting of ancient and historic trees at Suhrawardy Udyan on the pretext of constructing a monument to independence will not be announced illegal and unconstitutional, why construction of commercial establishments going beyond the main design will not be declared illegal, and why a directive should not be given to evict the already constructed establishments.
The Dhaka South City Corporation mayor , secretaries to the Ministry of Housing and Public Works, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, and the Ministry of Liberation War Affairs, chief conservator of forests, RAJUK chairman , director general of the Department of Environment and Chief engineer of the Department of Public Works were made respondents to the rule.