Appellant: Has the railways submitted any plantation plan to the competent authority for approval & whether that plantation plan has been sanctioned? - CIC: provide copies of the permission letters, drawings of plantations & copies of various approvals
O R D E R
1. The appellant filed an RTI application on 8.11.2012 requesting for a copy of permission obtained from the competent authority for felling trees in and around railway land of certain railway stations and other related issues. The appellant filed an appeal before the first appellate authority (FAA) on 10.10.2012. The appellant filed a second appeal with the Commission on 211.2013.
2. The appellant and the respondent were heard through videoconferencing.
3. The appellant referred to his RTI application of 8112012 and reiterated the three points which had been made in the RTI application that pertained to the permissions required from the competent authority for tree felling on railway land and various other permissions and approvals, including the plans required under various statutory provisions. The appellant stated that this RTI application of 8112012 has not been responded to.
4. The appellant stated that he wants to know whether the respondent organization has submitted any plantation plan to the competent authority for approval and whether that plantation plan has been sanctioned.
5. The respondent stated that they have brought with them to this hearing the information which the appellant was seeking. The respondent said that in respect of the six locations mentioned in point one of the RTI application, the permission has been obtained from the competent authority for tree felling in 6 of the 10 locations which are Kamarkundu, Barulpara, Begumpur, Dankuni, Belur and Liluah.
6. The respondent stated that in respect of other four spots, the permission is yet to be taken as the process is not yet complete and at this point of time, the drawings are being made for Nalikul, Janai, Gobra and Bally. The respondent said that they will provide the copies of the six permission letters which show the sanction by the authorized department.
7. The respondent said that in respect of point two of the RTI application, the respondent stated that the plantation has been done in accordance with the plantation plan and that 125 tree saplings have planted in Ranaut, 400 in Jirag and 150 in Dhaerie Gaon. The respondent further stated that they felt that there is no need for making the drawings and hence drawings were not made taking into account the constraints, i.e., paucity of land and that most of the plantations had to be done not actually at the platforms or the stations but in the adjacent area.
8. The respondent stated that the respondent organization has not submitted any plantation plan. The respondent said that when the construction work was planned then the survey revealed that there is no sufficient places for planting trees, hence the need for submitting any plantation plan was not felt. The respondent said that this is the reason why the plantation had to be done at some distantce from the construction work.
9. In respect of point 3, the respondent stated that the drawings were prepared for Kamarkundu and these are sanctioned by the competent authority and they are available in the construction office.
10. The respondent is directed to provide, within 30 days of this order, to the appellant (a) copies of the permission letters; and (b) drawings or sketches of plantations and whatever copies of the various approvals are available with the respondent organization. Appeal is disposed of. Copy of this order be given free of cost to the parties.
Citation: Shri Sankar Prasad Hajra v. Eastern Railway in Decision No.CIC/AD/C/2013/000333/VS/07380