The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday directed to demolish five apartments at the Maradu municipality in Kochi. The direction comes after the SC found out that the apartments have violated Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) rules.
The Supreme Court has said that the apartments should be demolished within one month. Holy Faith, Kayaloram, Alfa Ventures, Holiday Heritage and Jain Housing are the apartments that should be demolished based on the SC order.
The Supreme Court issued the verdict on an appeal filed by Coastal Zone Management Authority. The bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra also added that Kerala cannot bear the brunt of another flood caused by illegal construction.
Maradu is a municipality located on the outskirts of Kochi Corporation. The municipality was formed in 2010, before that Maradu was a panchayat in Ernakulam district. According to reports, at the time when the apartments got permission for construction, Maradu was a panchayat. The land in the municipality is highly sought after as three National Highways – NH 66, NH 85 and NH 966B – pass through the region.
According to reports, the total CRZ area in Maradu municipality is spread over 1.72 square kilometres.
“The apartments were built after getting permission of the then panchayat in 2005. But an inspection of vigilance wing of the Local Self Government Department (LSDG) found that the apartments were built violating CRZ rules in two and three zones of CRZ,” secretary of Maradu municipality, Subash PK told TNM.
However, the construction of the apartments could not be stopped as they took the issue to the courts, he added.In 2015, the Kerala High Court gave a verdict in the issue in support of the apartments but then it was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Kerala Coastal Zone Management Authority.
“A three-member committee including district collector was constituted by the Supreme Court and the present verdict has come based on their report,” said Subash.