Apex court pulls up Centre, Uttar Pradesh govt.
New Delhi: Observing that nobody wants to take responsibility to preserve and maintain Taj Mahal in Agra to its pristine glory, the Supreme Court on Thursday pulled up the Centre and the Uttar Pradesh government for this state of affairs.
A Bench of Justices Madan B. Lokur and Deepak Gupta, hearing a petition relating to Taj Mahal, expressed shocked that over 1167 polluting industries still exists in the Taj Trapezium Zone.
The bench after perusing the “draft vision document” filed by the UP government, observed, “the affidavit filed says 1,167 polluting industries in TTZ. This is shocking. You say it is a draft document. Are we supposed to correct it? Why have you filed a draft?”
The Bench asked the A-G, “Who is responsible for preserving Taj? Is it UP or is it Government of India? Which Ministry? Tourism or Ministry of Environment and Forest or Home Ministry or ASI or Uttar Pradesh? Everyone is filing affidavits. The left hand doesn’t know what right hand does.”
The A-G replied that Archaeological Survey of India is responsible for Taj maintenance.
The bench asked the attorney general K.K. Venugopal appearing for the Centre to inform whether authorities have submitted Taj management plans to Unesco’s World Heritage Centre Justice Lokur asked. “What will happen if UNESCO says that we will withdraw the World Heritage tag of the Taj Mahal?