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Kerala govt not to appeal in Aranmula airport case

Kerala chief minister Oommen Chandy on Friday said the state would not appeal in the Supreme court against the verdict of the Chennai bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) in the Aranmula airport case.

It is the responsibility of the KGS Group–the promoters of the Aranmula airport project– to address the issue after the tribunal order. If they get a favorable order from the apex court, the government would act accordingly. However, the government will not prohibit the construction of the airport, said the Kerala chief minister.

The Green Tribunal on Wednesday cancelled the environment clearance given to the airport project. The tribunal  also ordered the KGS Group to stop the ongoing construction activities at the project site in Pathanamthitta district.

The bench has cancelled the environment clearance mainly because of the incompetency of Enviro Care, the agency which had done the study on environmental impact of the proposed project.

The airport project, in the central part of Kerala, landed into controversy as the famous Aranmula Sree Parthasarathy temple is in the vicinity of the project. This created a strong resistance from the public, especially from the Hindu devotees.

The project became a major campaigning issue in the recently concluded Parliament election. The Kerala government has a 10 per cent stakeholding in KGS Aranmula International Airport Limited, which is the promoting company of the project.

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