Next Court hearing on May 28 | Daily News


 

Dumping of Colombo garbage at Muthurajawela sanctuary:

Next Court hearing on May 28

The Fundamental Rights petition filed by 35 five residents in the close proximity of the Muthurajawela Sanctuary seeking an Order directing the authorities not to store or dump garbage in the Sanctuary was yesterday fixed for argument by the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court three-judge-Bench comprising Justice Sisira de Abrew, Justice Preethi Padman Surasena and Justice Gamini Amarasekera fixed the petition for argument on May 28.

The Supreme Court has already issued an Interim Order preventing the authorities including the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) from dumping garbage in the Muthurajawela Sanctuary, until the final determination of this petition.

The Attorney-at-Law who appeared on behalf of the CMC informed Court that the CMC was not disposing garbage at the Muthurajawela Sanctuary.

Senior Counsel Dr. Sunil Coorey appearing for the petitioners complained that reclamation of land and sand mining are still taken place in the Muthurajawela Sanctuary.

The petitioners cited the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC), CMC Municipal Commissioner, Urban Development Authority (UDA), Central Environment Authority (CEA), the Wattala Pradeshiya Sabha and six other parties as respondents.

The petitioners further stated that the petitioners and their families and other residents in the close proximity of the Muthurajawela Sanctuary have been severely affected and continue to be affected by this dumping.

The petitioners further stated that the area in question is declared a sanctuary under the Flora and Fauna Protection Act by the Gazette dated 31.10.1996 in recognition of its vast bio-diversity. The petitioners further stated that the Muthurajawela is also a large paddy field and it is also consist of water canals marsh lands and the forest. As per the register of the Agrarian Development Office of the area shows that the total extent of paddy fields in the Muthurajawela amount to 635 acres and a marsh and mangrove amounts to 7000 acres, the petitioners added.

The petitioners stated that by the said action of dumping garbage in to the sanctuary without any authority or following property procedures, the authorities who allowed and commits such acts have violated the Laws of the country including Section 33(1) and 34(1) of the Agrarian Development Act No.46 of 2000, Section 7(1) (h) (i),Section 7(1) (c) (ii) of the Flora and Fauna Protection Ordinance.

The said acts done by the CMC have infringed Fundamental Rights of the petitioners as well as of the members of the general public guaranteed to them by them by article 12(1) and 14(1) (g) and the Fundamental Right to life which is also constituted and guaranteed by the constitution of the republic. The petitioners further sought a declaration on the respondents to take necessary actions and appropriate steps to ensure that no garbage is deposited and dumped in the Muthurajawela Sanctuary.

 


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