-- N. K. Vuttsya, Advocate --

Well said that,

  …The forests are the lungs of world, as they give Oxygen, much needed by the living beings-they are sources of wood, medicine, food and other products, besides, conserving the soil and prevent soil-erosion, check the velocity of wind and floods, shelter wild-animals, who are an indispensible part and parcel of eco-system providing eco-balance, as a rule of nature…

-          Anonymous

 Then, can we afford to forget or ignore Mahatma Gandhi’s words, that,

The Nature can meet all our NEEDs, but not a single GREED.”

Alas! above words seem to be meaningless and worthless for those public functionaries and authorities, who for some extraneous considerations forget that they are under bounded Constitutional and Statutory duties to protect, preserve and develop the Environment as a whole, and Forests and their Bio-diversity, in particular.

So far as, hue and cry for materialistic development is concerned, even a lay man, in common parlance could perceive and understand, that,

‘Sustainability’, is not a term to be comprehended and understood ‘loosely’ to mean ‘readily exploitation of natural resources or diversion and destruction of Forests and their bio-diversity, rather the term speaks about exploitation of Natural Resources and diversion/destruction of Forest, ‘thriftily’, to the bare minimum extent, that too, as of necessity, as a last resort or as an un-avoidable and indispensible alternative.

It is not that, the Natural Resources and Forests are taken to be a PICK from some waste or throw-away resources, meant and reserved to be put to any use according whims and fancies of State Machineries, either on their own or at the instance of and/or to please or to gain popularity amongst some handful vested interests, in order to attain some political mileage or other unwarranted benefit”.

Conflict and resentment, is thus, obvious and is bound to surface, when the Forestry and bio-diversity made an easy-prey and escape goat, mindlessly by giving total go-bye to fundamental principles of Environmental Jurisprudence, particularly, principle of ‘Indispensability’ and ‘Sustainable Development’.

Recently, on the eve of ‘World Environment Day’, i.e. on 05.06.2022, the hon’ble PM as also the Government, both counted their respective achievements on environmental front. It was announced that in past 8 years India’s efforts to protect environment have been multi-dimensional. Contextually seen, there had been a growth of 20,000 sq. kms. in India’s Forest cover, with an increase of Wild-life number. Position in North-East Region States remained stable. Nevertheless, an overall growth about 15-20% is a good sign.

In contrast to the above, then there is a discouraging negative report from the World Bank, which for 2022 placed India at the bottom 5 countries in Environment Performance Index (EPI) List of 180 Countries, Indian scored 18.9, as against, 27.6 in 2020. Countries like Bangladesh, Myanmar, Pakistan and Vietnam are performing well and are above us. Denmark is on the top. Contextually may not be relevant, but fact remains that on certain fronts other than environment, like, ‘control of Corruption’, ‘Rule of Law’ and ‘Government Effectiveness’, We are performing very poorly.

Whatever that may be, the report pertaining to North-East Region States/UTs is rather disturbing. This region is mostly a hilly terrain. Now days, the problem of avalanche and land-slides are at alarmingly high. There are also incidents of furious and devastating floods in rivers flowing through mountainous region, having devastating effect on life and properties, as in 2013-2014; we have witnessed the calamity of Kedarnath. Even the regions like J. & K., Rajasthan are having unprecedented heavy rain-falls and furious floods. There are several other grey areas which are cause of serious concern. Problems of Water-pollution, Air-pollution, ever shrinking level of ground water leading to acute scarcity of drinking water.

Before delving further, it would be apt to have a passing glimpse on constitutional frame-work and statutory regime, herein, itself.

For time immemorial, there had been regulatory regime in the field of Environment Forests etc. It is well settled, right to life under Article 21, and encompasses to have a healthy and sustainable ‘Environment’, to say, healthy atmosphere and surroundings to live in, with nutritious food to eat and pure water to drink. Article 21 cannot be read in isolation, Article 12 and 49-An r/w Article 51.-A, are part and parcel of the Constitutional scheme of ‘Right to Life’ an expanse and contours. After conscious and considerate deliberations, Articles 48-A and Article 51-A were introduced by way of Constitution (Forty-Second Amendment) Act, 1976, w.e.f. 08.04.1977, with a definite purpose in mind.

Article 48-A falls in already existing Part IV of the Constitution, which enumerates ‘Directive Principles of State Policy’. Those principles are not only directives but are meant to supplement ‘Fundamental Rights’ in achieving a ‘Welfare State.’ Significance of these lay in the fact in certain circumstances, even ‘Fundamental Rights’ can be amended to answer the ‘directives’ contained in Part-IV. Hence, State in its policies and actions, is bound to remain guided and promoted by these directives’, contextually seen, ‘Protection and Improvement of Environment and Safeguarding of Forests and Wild-life’, as directed in Article 48-A.

Coming to Article 51-A, which alone appears in Part-V of the Constitution, specially added to the Constitution vide 42nd Amendment, spells certain ‘Fundamental Duties’ which every citizen is bound to perform. In a society governed by ‘Rule of Law’, it is not that, the ‘State’ or its functionaries alone are not supposed to perform their duties in consonance with constitutional and/or statutory provisions in achieving ‘Welfare State. Every ‘Citizen, as a member of the society, equally, had duties to be performed, so that, one the one hand, one enjoys benefits of all State largesse, economic policies, natural resources etc. on the principles of equality and co-existence; on the other hand, remains abided by our Constitution. Contextually, Clause (g) of Article 51-A is of immense significance. It mandates every citizen to ‘protect and improve natural environment, including forests, lakes, rivers and wild-life, and have compensation towards living creatures’. These duties are often invoked in Environmental litigations.

So far as, Statutory Regime covering various environmental aspects is concerned, even pre-Independence India, there had been Indian Forest Act, 1927. Post Independence, several other legislations came to be brought on Statute Book. Significantly, in 1972, The Wildlife Protection Act was brought. Then there is advent of new Forest law, in the form of Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980, which in the present context had much relevance. Around this period there had been also spurt of several other enactments, covering different aspects, which have direct impact on human existence and healthy environment. Illustratively, legislations relating to Control of Water Pollution and Air Pollution; handling and disposal of hazardous/obnoxious wastes and industrial effluents. Contextual significance rests with introduction of Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 and Bio-diversity Act, 2002. On procedural fronts, in 2010 we had National Green Tribunal Act, 2010, which brought a see-through change regarding jurisdiction of Court, particularly, out constitutional court in the matters relating to environment, forests etc. Since the advent of this Act, dockets of our higher Courts have been relieved of burden to a considerable extents and those Courts are now divert and concentrate on adjudication of litigations pertaining to other types of matters. Nevertheless, extra-ordinary powers and jurisdiction exercised by the Supreme Court and High Courts under the Constitution still are intact.

That apart, as per mandates of Article 141, even the ‘law declared by the hon’ble Supreme Court is the ‘law of the land’, required to be implemented and scrupulously followed by every individual, by the State, by the instrumentalities of the State, its functionaries/authorities, by every subordinate Court, including the High Courts, and even by the Supreme Court, itself.

Common knowledge that, implementation and enforcement of any law, always remained problematic, either due min-interpretation of a constitutional provisions or due to ambiguity or complexity or vacuum in a given statutory instrument; or, due to lethargy, slackness or negligence on the part of Executive/Enforcement Agency or due to deliberate and calculated act of omission or commission on the part of Bureaucrats and public functionaries for some extraneous reason or due to impact of some external force.

Confrontation with aforenoted eventualities occurring in implementation of the ‘law of the land’, contextually, the law relating to environment, ultimately led to judicial intervention of Constitutional Court and/or Special Tribunals like NGT. But for such intervention, the environment and the atmosphere in which we live, presently, with some breather relief, albeit, much below the optimum level, would have been a misnomer.

Coming to the history of precedents governing the field of Environment, there is catena of decisions rendered by the Hon’ble Supreme Court, as also, by various High Courts. However, for present a brief account of some important judgments of the Hon’ble Supreme Court, with special emphasis on contemporaneous ideological shift of ‘Environmental Jurisprudence’, confined to Forests and Bio-diversity, is given, herein after.

 Coming to the ‘law’ declared by the hon’ble Supreme Court in respect of protection of Forests, as an integral and essential part of Environment, narration would be meaningless and incomplete, without there being a reference to oft quoted and oft cited, rather the most popular case of T. N. Godavarman Thirumulpad vs U.O.I & Ors., (W.P. (C) No. 202 of 1995, which, for last more than 25-26 years is still pending, having a spread of hundreds and hundreds of off-shoot. In this case, taking serious note of prevailing scenario in the field of ‘Forests’, at the threshold, vide interim order dated 12.12.1996, the hon’ble Court thought it proper to clarify the doubts as regards the true scope of the Forest Conservation Act, 1980 and the meaning of the word 'forest' used therein, as extracted below,

“(4)…The word "forest: must be understood according to its dictionary meaning. This description covers all statutonly recognised forests, whether designated as reserved, protected or otherwise for the purpose of Section 2(i) of the Forest Conservation Act. The term\"forest land", occurring in Section 2, will not only include "forest" as understood in the dictionary sense, but also any area recorded as forest in the government record irrespective of the ownership. This is how it has to be understood for the purpose of Section 2 of the Act. The provisions enacted in the Forest Conservation Act, "1980 for the conservation of forests and the matters connected therewith must apply clearly to all forests so understood irrespective of the ownership or classification thereof…

In all judgments and orders that followed, aforenoted directions in T. N. Godavarman (supra), remained at the central stage to guide the path in adjudicatory process. Without bulking this write-up with multiple authorities, who followed those directions, suffice to cite some illustrative few, having comparatively a very recent origin, representing the intervening period of almost 2 and half decades.

We may refer M. C. Mehta vs. UOI, W. P. (C) No. 13381/1984 (Taj Trapezium case) decided on 02.12.2020; followed by interim directions issued on 07.12.2020 in Rajeev Suri vs. UOI & Ors., SLP (C) No… Diary No. 8340 of 2020 (Central Vista Case), in latter case final judgment came on 05.01.2020. Thereafter, a little later a judgment in Himachal Pradesh Bus Stand Management and Development Authority Vs. Central Empowered Committee etc. & Ors., C. A. No. 5231-5232 of 2016 (HPBSM & DA case) came on 12.01.2021. Yet, followed by judgment in National Highways Authority of India vs. Pandarinathan Govindarajulu & Anr. C. A. Nos. 4035-4037of 2020, delivered on 19.01.2020; and Hospitality Association of Mudumalai Vs. In Defence of Environment and Animals and Ors. etc., C. A. Nos. 3438-3439 of 2020 etc.

Second set of such authorities occupying the field of ‘Environmental Justice’, which are also of latest origin, have been cited and discussed succinctly by Live Law in an article published by them on their web-portal, recently on the eve of ‘Environment Day’ celebrated on 5th June of every year. Under the caption of ‘World Environment Day Special – Recent Supreme Judgments on Environmental Law’, they have specifically referred to Pahwa Plastics Pvt. Ltd. vs. Dastak NGO, 2022 LE (SC) 327, decided on 25.03.2022. Reference to Binay Kumar Dalei vs State of Odisha, 2022 LE (SC) 228, decided on 02.03.2022, would not be out of place. Kantha Vibhag Yuva Koli Samaj Parivartan Trust vs. State of Gujarat & Ors. 2022 LE (SC) 115; decided on 21.01.2022; Madhya Pradesh High Court Advocates Bar Association vs. Union of India & Ors. 2022 LE (SC) 571, decided on 18.05.2022. There is also reference to few judgments/orders passed in various IAs filed in T. N. Godavarman (supra), they might include, judgments delivered between the period from 15.02.2021 to latest till 04.06.2022.

Need not to state that, in all these judgments, dispute pertained to a conflict between protection, preservation and development of forests and their bio-diversity, and on the other hand, even increasing societal demand of material development of infrastructure and civic amenities, which was resolved, invariably by applying fundamental principles of Eco-Jurisprudence, viz. (i) sustainability; (ii) precautionary principle; and (iii) compensatory principle or principle that ‘Polluter pays. Even the judgment in Hospitality Association of Mudumalai (supra), in the context of preservation and protection of balanced Eco-systems, declared Wild-life as an indispensible and very important constituent.

 If one scans through these authorities, gets a clear picture about contemporary trend of environmental Jurisprudence, that is to say, even if there is a re-iteration and re-statement that ‘the societal need for economic and material development indeed is important factor, parallel to the need of Society for a healthy environment ,and both must be balanced on principle of ‘sustainability’, but at the same time it clarified that in case of conflict between the two competing public interests, former must yield to the latter.

So far as, cutting of an isolated tree or a large number of trees is concerned, the hon’ble Court hoped and expected that, ‘as far as possible, the attempt should be to spare the tree or trees. Again, in view of the Court, work of a tree cannot be estimated only in terms of the value of its timber, but its worth has to be assessed in terms of its overall capacity to generate Oxygen.

Authorities also make it clear that, after its constitution in 2010, NG now had a statutory primacy in power and jurisdiction in respect of matters pertaining to environment, forests etc. It can obtain reports from fact-finding bodies/agencies or from Experts in particular fields, but, final adjudicatory function to accept or not to accept the same, still rests in its hand. Nevertheless, inspite of special and pervasive powers of NGT, extraordinary and equitable jurisdiction of constitutional Courts, particularly, jurisdiction of High Courts under Article 226 and/or Article 227 of the Constitution, and jurisdiction of Supreme Court under Article 32, Same being the part of basic structure of the Constitution, cannot be ousted by jurisdiction of NGT under Sections 14 and 22 of NGT Act.

Alas! Despite the above scenario of regulatory law framework, the ground reality as to its implementation of such positive law is very unfortunate.

It is not that nobody in Power Circles or in the battery of public functionaries is cognizant to and is live to the importance and indispensability of environment and its constitutes, but, unfortunately, their concerns and resolves come on special occasions of celebration of special days, like, ‘World Environment Day’ (5th June), ‘World Forestry Day’ ( March 21), ‘World Wet-land Day’ (2nd February), ‘World Water Day’ (22nd March), ‘World Earth Day’ (22nd April),’ World Habitat Day’ (3rd October), ‘World Wild-life Week’ (October 1st to 7th), ‘World Animal Welfare Day’ (4th October), etc., but, it is common experience that, all such conscience, cognizance and concern is mostly shown under event management and propaganda drives by way of hollow speeches and/or activities purely meant and aimed at Video coverage or Photo-shoot sessions, to attract public attention and gain some hidden advantage, political or otherwise. Let that as that may be.

 What in fact is attempted to highlight is the sorrowful state of affirms with regard to practical implementation of Environmental laws, particularly, relating to Forests and their Bio-diversity’ To justify the title head of this writ-up, in fairness of things and sincerity of presentation, as an illustration and classic example, I am picking the tale-tale story of pathetic condition of Forests and Bio-diversity of Aligarh District, which as a part of the Sate of U.P.. Happens to be my native District.

Loud cry with regard to Aligarh Forestry is that, ‘ALL IS, NOT WELL’ in the sense that, the settled principles of Environmental Jurisprudence and positive directions issued by constitutional Courts/Special tribunals, had any meaning for public administrators/bureaucrats, as also, for their political bosses, who are supposed to reign the State, and in fact, who form the Government think-tank. Doctrine of ‘Public Trust’ hand lost in oblivion, Claims in respect of ‘Natural Resources’ which are supposed to be stored underneath the Earth or hidden in deeps of the Sea beds or grow over the mother-land, are staked by public entities and/or department, as of the claim of ownership over some property by an individual subject.

 Having played a vital role, at one stage, in bringing the matter in the cognizance of the hon’ble NGT, as also, having resolved to carry-forward the matter further on legal fronts to ensure that my quest for ‘Environmental Justice,’ reaches its logical conclusion, I can claim not only the first-hand knowledge, but, in case of necessity, can also establish and substantiate, with a high degree of certitude, what I am asserting or may assert.

Iron of the matter is that, in the teeth of hard fact that authenticated and genuine official record pertaining to Aligarh Forests, named or un-named, goes back, as early as to 1933, 1947-1948, 1950-1955, at one point of time, say, in 2008, one of the senior most public administrator of Aligarh, none other than concerned District Magistrate, in his mis-adventurous spree, went on forward a false report, signed jointly by three of his subordinate senior officers at district level, namely, District Forest Officer, District Horticultural Officer and District Agriculture Officer, with impunity reporting that, ‘THERE IS NO FOREST OR FROEST LIKE AREA IN ENTIRE DISTRICT, SO INFORMATION BE TAKEN AS NIL’ It was so presented by discarding the ‘Technical Report submitted by concerned DFO, a few days before, then. Leave aside all other documentary and/or visual proof, the fact that, from time immemorial, in Aligarh District there was and still there is a large establishment of Forest Department, and, one of the signatories of that Repot himself was a senior most Officer of the rank of DFO. Besides, there is a 1955 Gazette Notification containing a list of Forests than declared to be reserved Forests under Section 4 of 1927 Forest Act.

It is different thing that, said Gazette Notification did not enumerate Aligarh Forests by name, but in common parlance, several forests are recognized with their popular names which are prefixed by the name of respective village, e.g. ‘Gurusikaran Forest,’ ‘Andala Forest,’

 Pala-Sallu Black-Buck Reserve.’

            So far as, ‘Gurusikaran Forest is concerned, vide a Gazette dating back to 1933, it was declared a ‘Reserved Forest’, and remained so till 1947-48, when after its ‘dereservation’ for specific purposes of augmentation of ‘Food Production’ which was then in acute shortage, was handed over to some private entity/Company. Undeniably, this Forest admeasured 628.50 acres () comprised of lands belonging to three villages namely, (i) Gurusikaran; (ii) Darapur; and, (iii) Mahua-khera, forming part of a cluster of several villages surrounding the Forest.

Around 1950-1955, a portion of ‘ de-reserved Forest’ came to be handed over to a project, namely, Central Dairy Farm (CDF)’, the functional and executive wing of State Animal Husbandry Department, by way of lease for a specific propose (say, 30 years) ad for a specific purpose (say augmentation of Food Production). Legally seen, the period of lease was to expire sometime in 1980-1985, Armed with lease document and on the strength of illegal retention of possession of subject ‘Forest Land, the said CDF clandestinely got the ‘entire, ’ Forest Land mutated in its name in Revenue Records behind the back of legitimate stake-holder, the State Forest Department. This gave rise to a fierce legal battle between to Government entities/Departments, theoretically coming to an end only in September, 2007 by way of an order of the Revenue Board.

But what is more intriguing and shocking is the fact that around 1980-1984 a portion of the Forest (particularly, land belonging to village Gurusikaran) was leased to a centrally sponsored project namely, Action For Food Production (AFPRO), New Delhi, for a specific period of 7 years and for specific purposes. It is different thing that, after expiry of the lease, AFPRO took about 7 more years to depart from the scene, that too, unceremoniously after great resentment.

 Aafter unceremonious departure of AFPRO in 1998-1999, CDF once again managed to get re-inducted in the Forest, this time with its full force and might, usurping powers of self-proclaimed Owner and Master of entire ‘GURUSIKARAN FOREST’. At a point of time, it went on to auction more than 31,000 trees to a Private Contractor, however, stiff opposition and resentment from village community, thwarted that attempt to certain extent.

Ridiculous and startling is to note that, even during currency of Revenue Board Proceedings, Forest Land, taking to be so-called CDF Land was sold-out twice by way of two separate sale deeds executed under Government Grant Act, transferring all assets and liabilities of CDF to a Government Corporation, namely, UP Pashudhan Udyog Nigam Ltd. (Lucknow), admittedly, which was incorporated sometime in 1975 and admittedly, at that the juncture itself, all stakes, assets and liabilities of CDF were already transferred to it. A JUNGLE RAJ IN JUNGLE

Again, while the legal battle between two warring Government Departments/Entities was still continuing, the CDF, as also, the Public Administration at District level came with proposals for establishment of one or the other non-forestry Development Projects, like , Trenching Ground, Transport Nagar, Residential and/or Commercial/Industrial Complexes, Slaughter-house (un-mindful of the fact that in the heart of the Forest there existed a symbolic temple of the ‘God of Greens’, i.e. ‘Ghane Baba’, which was being worshiped by village folks from time immemorial and even a religious commemoration was arranged year to year, besides, the fact that in the close vicinity of the Forest, there existed a Temple of ‘MAA DURGA’/’MAA KALI”).


All this was happening and taking place in the teeth of hard truth that, for time immemorial the Forest in question was full with its Glory and riches of invaluable, beautiful and rare treasure of in all sort of ‘Flora and Fauna’, and besides being a Community Conserved Forest was worshiped by village folks believing it to be ‘GHANE BABA’ an acronym to ‘GOD OF GREENS’, traces whereof still existed. It was also a chicest pick for Scholars, Research-students, Academicians, Environmentalists, as an object of studies, research, write-ups etc. To support this, the printed material is more than in abundance. There also existed hundreds and hundreds of New Items and News Articles, regularly, appearing in print Medial for decades together. There is also videographic coverage and still photo captures, not only by individuals but also by some TV News channels, REALLY! A MESS-A TOTAL MESS.


Tale-take of the apathy and agony of Gurusikara Forest was not to stop here. At that very juncture an individual claiming himself to be successor-in-interest of a Wakf created by his father, the erstwhile Nawab, in respect of entire Forest Land, as part of his jagir, initiated a parallel wakf Board proceedings, Forest Department was not a party to these proceedings, however, on contest by said CDF, claim regarding Wakf stood rejected.

Again, while the legal battle between two warring Government Departments/Entities was still continuing, the CDF, as also, the Public Administration at District level came with proposals for establishment of one or the other non-forestry Development Projects, like , Trenching Ground, Transport Nagar, Residential and/or Commercial/Industrial Complexes, Slaughter-house (un-mindful of the fact that in the heart of the Forest there existed a symbolic temple of the ‘God of Greens’, i.e. ‘Ghane Baba’, which was being worshiped by village folks from time immemorial and even a religious commemoration was arranged year to year, besides, the fact that in the close vicinity of the Forest, there existed a Temple of ‘MAA DURGA’/’MAA KALI”). REALLY! A MESS-A TOTAL MESS.

Wait! There is yet more surprising and intriguing in the ‘Pandora’s Box.’ In normal course, after the aforesaid order of hon’ble Revenue Board, the State Government was supposed to have been handed over to Forest Department, followed by its declaration as a ‘Reserved Forest.’ Instead, towards the last quarter of 2012, the Government with total un-mindfulness, recklessness and impunity, proceeded to divert the entire ‘forest’ and ‘forest land’ for several non-forestry uses like, establishment of Residential/Commercial Colony; extension of Industrial area (irrespective of the that that, a major portion of the Industrial hub called ‘Tala Nagri, already established way back in 1990s, then was lying vacant); extension of RPF establishment which already existed few Kilometers away from the forest. At one point of time, a proposal for establishment of a World-class ‘Sport University’ was propagated to have been finalized and foundation laying ceremony thereof was slated to be done within a short-while, then.

Alarmed and perplexed, I was then constrained to approach the hon’ble NGT, raising voice against all the aforenoted illegalities and unconstitutional activities committed by public functionaries, directly or indirectly encouraged and facilitated by the Government, with its silence or active participation. , as noted hereinbefore. Thankfully, vide order dated 13.04.2014, the hon’ble NGT, then, in the first place was pleased of declare entire ‘Gurusikaran Forest land’ as ‘Forest Area’ for the reason it having a tree density of more than 0.4 as also in view of the judgment of hon’ble Supreme Court rendered in T. N. Godavarman (supra), followed by positive directions entrusting the task of supervision of the subject forest to the concerned Forest Department, further to undertake re-forestation or afforestation wherever it was necessary. Besides, on its own admission, the State Government was directed to hear me, being the applicant before the hon’ble BGT, before it takes a final view in respect of establishment of Sports University in the Area. All objections raised by me before the hon’ble Tribunal were directed to be considered by the Competent Authority. Need not to state that, in case of my grievance or exception to the final outcome of disposal of those objections, liberty was granted to me to re-agitate the issue before appropriate forum,

Significantly, immediately after the said authoritative pronouncement, the proposal for establishment of Sport University in the subject area or even in any alternate side in Aligarh district itself was dropped. Project was then shifted to Saibai, the native town of the then CM Mr. Akhilesh Yadav. On the other hand, within few months thereafter, the local Forest Department finalized the proposal for establishment of a ‘Bio-Diversity Park’ and made a long headway by constituting a village Monitoring Committee. Matter was then sent for approval of the said Committee by the Government, as also, for sanction of the budgetary plan for allocation of requisite funds by the Government, on its own asking.

While in respect of the above proposal of Bio-Diversity Park a positive response was expected from the Government, abruptly, at the end of 2014, i.e. on 22.12.2014, a Meeting was held under the chairman of the Ld. Chief Secretary, purportedly to discuss the compliance of the said order of hon’ble NGT, But, the outcome of the same was kept in dark for about 7-8 months, until a copies of the Minutes of the said Meeting were amongst all the stake-holders, including Me, being the applicant before the hon’ble NGT, again abruptly in the month of August, 2015, Conspicuously, there was not a slightest whisper about establishment of Sport University , the entire stress was on self-same perception and ipse dixit of the CDF, for that matter, Animal Husbandry Department, the main wrong-doer and the offender, that, the ownership of subject land rested with CDF and that the land is very precious and valuable for various development purposes. Ultimately, the ball was once again put in the court of CDF/Pashdhan Vibhag, with an upper hand. It is different thing that, due to delay in Train Journey, I, as an invitee could not attend the Meeting personally, however, managed to send my representative from Kanpur attend the meeting and appraised the concerned officers about the situation obtaining then, No gain saying that, in entire Minutes, there was conspicuous silence on number of objections raised by Me in my written objections dated 20.12.2014 mailed through post on 10.01.2015, which were nothing but a re-iteration of the grievances made before the hon’ble NGT.

After the aforesaid meeting, the matter remained in abeyance for about two years. Till 2017. On 20.12.2017, a meeting was once again held under Chairmanship of Ld, Chief Secretary of the State, followed by four meetings consecutively one after the other after regular intervals, to say, on 29.11.2018,06.04.2019, 20.212.2020 and latest on 22.12.2021, to discuss and deliberate on the very same issue. In first three of these meetings, I was invited to attend, and, on each occasion a detailed representation/.objection was sent.

Fate of Gurusikaran Forest seems to have been sealed finally in the meeting dated 22.12,2021,about which I had no information or intimation, contrarily I came to know about the final outcome thereof only on receipt of a copy of the minutes of the said meeting on 18.02.2022 ,followed a copy of the final order passed by Principal Secretary. Uttar Pradesh Pashudhan Vibhag, the main wrong-doer/offender, on 16.03.2022

In that said meeting, Forest Department took the stand that, density of trees standing in the area being 0.4 % the area is Forest Area. This stand was in consonance with the order passed and declaration made by the hon’ble NGT. But over-reaching the biding order of the hon’ble NGT, the said stand taken by the Forest Department was rejected purportedly on the basis of so-called record and new evidence. Forest Department was then directed to identify the trees with 0.4 densities and prepare a Green-belt. Virtually, it is MONKEY SHARING by Pashudhan Vibhag.

 Entire exercise undertake, conclusions drawn and directions issued during the course of Meeting, in them amounted to contempt of the Court. Again, Pashudhan Udyog Nigam Ltd. (CDF) was left with liberty to take appropriate action in accordance with the Rules on the land other than that over which trees have grown naturally. What is more suspenseful is the liberty granted to so-called purchasers of land to obtain the permission under Forest Conservation Act, 1980, in case they need ay land from Green Belt? Virtually, it is MONKEY SHARING by Pashudhan Vibhag, under self-usurped power.

Behind all this. There is a hidden agenda of Real-Estate Game players, having patronage, backing and participation of some highly placed bureaucrats, local leaders who are either part of ruling Government or who have a say at political power grid. Whatever may be, the casualty is going to be ‘Gurusikaran Forest’, as there is imminent danger that even the ‘Leftovers’ of the Forest are going to raised to the ground, day-in or day-out.

 Such an encouragement come from the indifference, insensitivity and conspicuous silence negligence on the part of the Government of U.P. towards its avowed duty to protect and improve environment, including forests and wild-life, which had ultimately caused total destruction of another forest, popularly known as ‘Andala Forest by giving a total go-bye to regulatory regime of Forest and Environment laws.

These illegal and destructive activities were undertaken and are proposed to be undertaken, reaming un-mindful and oblivious of the fact that as against optimum level of Forestry, the position of State of Uttar Pradesh is already grim in the sense that the State had only 7.5 % Forest Cover of its total geographical area, while admitted condition of Aligarh District is worse, as it had only 1.8 % tree density.

Material available in public domain suggest suggests that, Aligarh episode is not an Isolated incidence, position in entire State is somewhat similar, and, no exaggeration, if the same it taken to be similar

So far as, Aligarh Forestry and its Bio-diversity are concerned, I am sparing no efforts to ensure that the situation is remedied to the best possible extent, at least now onwards. In that direction way back in February, 2021, the matter was taken to the Court constituted Central Empowered Committee (CEC), so that same is channeled to the hon’ble Supreme Court, after it gets filtered and refined by CEC and, the matters reaches to its legal and logical conclusion.

Lastly, with painful heart this much could be said that,

“situation is Helpless and grim, as We are poised to pass-over a legacy to our future generations, wherein-amidst the jungles of Concrete and Cements-a healthy breath would be a most rare commodity-where calamities and nature’s fury would be an order of the day; We are at now or never, stage.”

N. K. Vuttsya, Advocate
Writer and Consultant Editor
Capital Law Infotech (Delhi)
88266 70911

29 Jun 2022


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-R.K. Sahni, Advocate, Delhi High Court


-Jagruti Kate, Law Student, GLC, Mumbai

Rights under India Law for Protection of Children

-Shiv Shankar Banerjee, Advocate, Supreme Court of India


-Rajiv Raheja, Advocate, Supreme Court of India




-Shiv Shankar Banerjee, Advocate Supreme Court of India

The Extent of Criminalisation in Politics

-Asutosh Lohia, Advocate, Delhi High Court

Right of Voter to know about Candidate: A Note

-Sanjoy Yambem, Advocate, High Court of Manipur

Anti Defection Law: A Note

-Asutosh Lohia, Advocate, Delhi High Court

Legal Framework on Indian Heritage

-Shiv Shankar Banerjee, Advocate, Calcutta High Court

Human Rights and Education

-Ajay Veer Singh, Advocate, Supreme Court of India

The Art of Pleading (An Insight)

-Lovkesh Jain, Advocate

A Glimpse of the POCSO Act, 2012

-SAMARJIT HAWAIBAM, Addl. Public Prosecutor, (High Court), Manipur

Banks and NBFC — Comparison & Procedure

-Vipul Raheja, Advocate, Delhi High Court


-Mohd. Latif Malik, Advocate, J&K High Court

Insurable Interest: The Key Element Of Marine Insurance

-Atul Nigam, Advocate, Delhi High Court