After hearing the PIL filed in the case of encroachment on the banks of the Ganges in Rishikesh and with the connivance of officials thereon, the High Court has ordered DM Pauri Garhwal to visit the ashram. The court has ordered the State Pollution Board to inform the court about the information about the room in the ashram and the sewerage system there.
The court also said that where the sewerage of the ashram is being put, whether the treatment plant is there or not. The court has asked whether sewerage is being dumped into the Ganges river. The court has directed the District Magistrate, Pollution Board and the State Government to investigate in this regard within two weeks and submit a detailed report. In this case, the Court has made the Secretary Revenue a party with automatic cognizance.
The case was heard before the bench of Chief Justice Ramesh Ranganathan and Justice Alok Kumar Verma. High court advocate Haridwar resident Vivek Shukla had filed a PIL stating that Parmarth Niketan Swargashram in Rishikesh occupied 70 meters of government land along the banks of the Ganges. The petition said that after constructing a bridge in the Ganges, a statue has been built along the river and a commercial building has been constructed. The commercial building has been leased to the bank and others. Their rent is being taken by the ashram. This is causing a loss of revenue to the government.
The petition also stated that garbage from the ashram is being dumped into the Ganges river. Ganga is being polluted by this. There was a demand from the petitioner to free the place from encroachment, with a stay on it. The advocate of the petitioner told the court that there are 800 rooms and bathrooms, etc. in the ashram. Despite being given notice, the encroachment has not been removed from there. After hearing the sides, the High Court bench has directed the District Magistrate Pauri, Pollution Board and the government to investigate and submit a detailed report to the court.