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Joshimath crisis: Supreme Court refuses to declare land subsidence a national disaster  

Joshimath crisis: Supreme Court refuses to declare land subsidence a national disaster  

Joshimath: The top court dismissed the plea seeking immediate intervention by it to direct the Centre to assist in reparation work and provide urgent relief to the people of Joshimath, where over 700 houses and roads have developed cracks due to land subsidence.  

In Joshimath, over 700 houses and roads have developed cracks due to land subsidence.   In Joshimath, over 700 houses and roads have developed cracks due to land subsidence.  

The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday refused to declare the Joshimath land subsidence incident a national disaster, saying the petitioner can move Uttarakhand High Court. The top court dismissed the plea seeking immediate intervention by it to direct the Centre to assist in reparation work and provide urgent relief to the people of Joshimath, where over 700 houses and roads have developed cracks due to land subsidence.  

The SC permitted the petitioner to approach Uttarakhand HC with the plea to declare it a national disaster. 

A PIL was filed in the top court, seeking for the Joshimath sinking to be declared a National Disaster. The plea also prayed for compensation for the residents affected by it.

CJI DY Chandrachud had earlier asked the counsel to verify if the Uttrakhand High Court had taken note of the matter. The petitioner said that one application has been filed in connection with the 2021 disaster.

The CJI said as a matter of principle, the top court should allow the HC to deal with the matter. "High Court is ceased of a broad range of issues, we will give you the liberty to approach HC," the CJI was quoted as saying by the legal website Live Law.

The chief justice said the petition seeks assistance in reparation for Joshimath by the NDMA, to declare it a national disaster, to direct the state to provide rehabilitation, to direct the NTPC power project to provide insurance, to constitute a committee to enquire into efforts of the government for security and rehabilitation of citizens.

He said on 12 Jan 2023, the Uttrakhand HC passed an order. The 2021 accident took place as a result of a glacial burst that led to death and destruction.

The CJI said the High Court while entertaining the application underscores the importance of associating experts from fields of geology, landslide, disaster management, etc. He said the state has been strictly banned from carrying out any construction in Joshimath.

Published on: Jan 16, 2023, 3:44 PM IST
Posted by: Saurabh Sharma, Jan 16, 2023, 3:22 PM IST