The Supreme Court today granted four weeks time to the Centre for filing its response to a plea of BJP leader Subramanian Swamy that he wanted to withdraw his 2009 petition against the Sethusamudram project as government has decided that the mythological bridge Rama Sethu would not be dismantled.
A bench comprising Chief Justice H L Dattu and Arun Mishra granted the time after Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand, appearing for the Centre, sought it for making its stand clear.
The matter will now be listed before another bench as the CJI would be demitting office on December 2 and Justice Mishra said that he would not be part of the bench hearing it.
Swamy, on November 23, had mentioned the matter for urgent hearing saying that his prayer for scrapping of the project stands satisfied after the Centre took a decision and hence, he wanted to withdraw his plea.
The Sethusamudram shipping channel project has been facing protests from some political parties, environmentalists and several Hindu religious groups.
The mythological Ram Sethu is a continuous stretch of limestone shoals that runs from Pamban Island near Rameshwaram in South India to Mannar Island off the northern coast of Sri Lanka.
Under the Sethusamudram project, a 83-km-long deep water channel would have been created linking Mannar with Palk Strait by extensive dredging and removal of the limestone shoals which constitute the Sethu.
( Source – PTI )