Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh
on Friday candidly said he has been forced to regularise illegality many times, calling this phenomenon a "peculiar Indian characteristic".
Ramesh said he is totally against "regularising illegality" but regretted he had to make compromises in cases relating to violation of green norms.
"Regularisation of illegality is a peculiar Indian characteristic. First you make the law and then break law...," he said during an interaction at a conference organised by the All India Management Association (AIMA) here.
"Unfortunately many times I am forced to regularise. Because I have no option because one refinery has been built... steel plant is built. So I am guilty in some cases of having actually condone many environmental violations.
"There are some occasions that I have not compromised. In some occasions I had to compromise," he said.
"I am totally against regularising illegality."
Referring to his Ministry's order on demolition of Adarsh Housing Society, he said a signal has to go that violation of law would not be tolerated.
To a question regarding the demolition of huge illegal constructions, the Minister said his decision to order demolition of Adarsh Housing Society in Mumbai was to "send a signal" to the people who violate laws.
"In the case of Adarsh, matter is in the court and I don't want to say anything more. But my decision was very clear. The only option before me was to recommend complete demolition of Adarsh. Signal has to go to the people who violate law that violation of law will not be tolerated," he said.
Talking about the practice of construction of ports, cement factories and power plants in violation of laws, the Minister said in such cases "huge expenditure has been incurred" and "one has to be practical" while taking action.
"But at some points of time, the signal has to go that laws are laws and they should not be violated," Ramesh added.