The Supreme Court today rapped AAP Government ofDelhi for its stand on shifting of the Millennium Bus Depot on the banks of Yamuna here, saying the Chief Minister has been “on record” that the site would be vacated.
“As per the minutes of the meeting, held on January 15, 2014, your (Delhi Government) Chief Minister says that the site would be vacated. This is your Secretariat. Are you arguing against your Chief Minister,” a bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur asked while reserving its verdict on two appeals filed by the city government and the DTC respectively against the Delhi High Court decision.
The High Court, on October 20 last year, had shot down the plea of Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) on the issue saying it was an abuse of court process to seek extension of time after undertaking to shift it.
The apex court bench was critical of the alleged flip- flop of Delhi government and said, “Once your Chief Minister said that the site would be vacated, then vacate it. Now you also suffer a judgement after conceding.”
During the hearing, the bench, also comprising justices A K Sikri and R Banumathi, said that for augmenting the public transport system, DTC cannot be allowed to continue with its depot, meant for only two weeks during the Commonwealth Games, which is admittedly built on the river bed.
Justice Sikri, who is also part of the bench, 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 Paris and London, would be developed.
The bench also said if the land use has not been changed by amending the Master Plan, then DTC will have to relocate the depot in view of the fact that it has agreed to do so.
The DTC and the Delhi Government have 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 had also said that it had in 2012 given six months to either shift the depot or change land use of 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 logistic centre and two CNG-filling stations.
( Source – PTI )