The Supreme Court today asked the Delhi government and DTC to either shift out Millennium Bus Depot on the banks of Yamuna within a year or get the master plan amended to legalise its existence.
A bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justices A K Sikri and R Banumathi gave the direction while deciding separate appeals of the Delhi government and Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) on the issue.
The appeals were filed against a Delhi High Court order refusing to extend the time to the authorities to shift out the bus depot which was allowed to be constructed on temporary basis to park buses during the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
The apex court had earlier rapped the Delhi government for its stand on shifting of the depot, saying the Chief Minister has been “on record” that the site would be vacated.
On January 27, it had reserved the verdict on two appeals filed by the city government and DTC against the high court decision.
The apex court had said that for augmenting the public transport system, DTC cannot be allowed to continue with its depot, which was meant for only two weeks during the Commonwealth Games has been admittedly built on the river bed.
Justice Sikri had referred to his judgement passed as a high court judge and said it was an admitted position that no construction would be allowed on the flood plain of the river and it was also submitted that parks, on the lines of those in Paris and London, would be developed.
DTC and the Delhi government had challenged the high court decision dismissing the transporter’s plea for grant of six months to approach DDA to change the land use of the Millennium Bus Depot site.
The high court, on October 20, 2015, had shot down DTC’s plea on the issue, saying it was an abuse of the court process to seek extension of time after undertaking to shift it.
The high court had also said that it had in 2012 given six months to either shift the depot or change land use of the site and there was “no justifiable reason” now for further extension.
The 50-acre millennium depot was built on the river bank initially as a temporary depot during the 2010 games, with a parking space for around 1,000 buses along with various facilities, including five workshop-cum-scanning centres, a logistics centre and two CNG-filling stations.