HP officials colluding with hotel owners in Kasauli

Consumer Infoline News Desk / On 29 June, 2017

The Supreme Court said officials of the town planning department of Himachal Pradesh were hand in gloves with the owners of hotels and resorts in Kasauli engaged in unauthorized construction."Look what officials have done. They have gone overboard to help you," said the vacation bench of Justice Abhay Manohar Sapre and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul to a lawyer appearing for three petitioner hotels who have challenged the National Green Tribunal's May 30 order.

The NGT had directed the demolition of unauthorised portions of the five hotels in Kasauli that were built in violation of sanctioned plans, adversely affecting the environment, ecology and natural resources.Observing that the builders of these hotels in Kasauli were following no law and had built seven storeys in place of the sanctioned three, Justice Kaul said: "Officials are acquiescing and are colluding."

In one case, against the sanctioned plan of three storeys, the hotel owner had constructed eight storeys. Justice Kaul said that even after the dismissal of injunction order, "you get the restoration of electricity".Of the four petitioner hotels - AAA Guest House, Neelgiri Hotel, Hotel Pine View and Shivalik Guest House (also known as Hotel Shivalik) - the court passed different orders.

In case of Neelgiri Hotel and Hotel Pine View, the court did not grant stay of the NGT order.While issuing notice to the respondent Society for Preservation of Kasauli and its Environs, the top court stayed the operation of the NGT order in respect of AAA Guest House.The May 30 order followed a plea by the Society for Preservation of Kasauli and its Environs.With July 11 being the next date of hearing, the court tagged AAA Guest House petition with that of Narayani Guest House in which the top court had stayed the operation of the NGT order on June 16.

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