Life in Gurgaon

Google, Unitech must restore green belt, says Gurugram civic authority

Source: Hindustan Times

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The Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) on Tuesday ordered Google India Limited and Unitech Limited to restore the greenery in a green belt outside their office premises in Sector 15.

The GMDA had called the representatives of the companies for a personal hearing with regards to an offence of destroying greenery and cutting trees from a green belt outside the Google office without the prior permission of the GMDA.

“We have asked Google and Unitech to restore the patch in question to its original condition. They destroyed greenery from GMDA land along a national highway at Sector 15 for an access road from the Google office to NH, for which the authority did not grant permission. The forest department did not grant permission for this either. Now, we want them to restore the greenery and adopt certain patches for developing greenery in the city. They should play an environment friendly role,” said MD Sinha, additional chief executive officer (urban environment), GMDA.

A spokesperson for Google said, “This matter pertains to Unitech and so, the restoration of greenery issue relates to them and not to Google, which is only a tenant of Unitech in the building.”

Unitech already has an access road for the building from Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway. The new access road was being constructed hardly 50 feet away from the existing access road.

An official of Haryana Shahri Vikas Pradhikaran (HSVP, earlier Huda) had in January allegedly granted permission for the same despite not being authorised to do so. Unitech started constructing a road as per HSVP permission about 10 days ago, when the matter came to the notice of the GMDA, which withdrew the permission on June 29.

“Unitech will follow the directions issued by the GMDA,” a spokesperson for Unitech said.

Vivek Kamboj, an environmentalist, said, “This is a crime and there should be a penalty for this.”