Govardhan, 2019-09-01 (VT): While hearing the Govardhan Parikrama Conservation Case, the NGT made it clear that there is no restriction on e-rickshaws and ‘bhandaras’ on the Parikrama Marg. The Tribunal has warned the administration to stop misleading people on the pretext of the Orders.
After carefully studying the scenario, the NGT ordered the administration to form a team of traffic and Police department officers to get all e-rickshaws registered within 10 days. A panel consisting of MVDA vice chairman, BTVP Dep. CEO, SSP, and IGP has been constituted to work on a new e-rickshaw policy for Govardhan.
On august 27, people came out in huge numbers to protest against NGT’s restrictions on the Parikrama Marg. Shops and school/colleges in Govardhan, Radhakund, Anyor, Jatipura and other localities were closed down. Angry locals demanded the following five things from the administration/NGT
- Issue passes for locals on the Govardhan Panchkosi Parikrama Marg
- Local vehicles should not be stopped
- Lift restrictions on ‘Pyaaus’ and ‘Bhandaras’ (temporary drinking and eating stalls)
- Stop unwarranted demolition going on in the name of encroachment removal
- Lift restriction on e-rickshwas
In some places, the demonstrations turned violent with petrol stations and shops being ransacked. Considering it a violation of Section 144, the Police have booked around 150 people for disturbing law and order in the area.
Recently, Govardhan activist and one of the petitioners in this case, Anandgopal Das filed an affidavit in the National Green Tribunal relating to concerns for his safety after a video with death threats started circulating on social media.
While work on the long-awaited ring road is moving at a snail’s pace, Govardhan faces severe traffic problems, especially on weekends and festival days, making it almost impossible for residents to reach their own homes. Furthermore, according to Anandgopal Das, police deliberately harass residents by stopping their vehicles on the Parikrama and anger gets directed against him.