Panaji, Oct 9 (IANS) The Goa bench of the Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued notice to the Union Environment and Forest Ministry over its process of Blue Flag certification of the Miramar beach in the state capital.
The notice issued by the Bench comprising of Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and M. S. Sonak, followed a petition filed by litigant Kashinath Shetye, a Panaji resident, who has argued that the MoEF notification earlier this year, which identified Goa’s popular Miramar beach for Blue Flag certification was violative of green norms.
The Court has directed the MoEF to respond to the notice by November 4, while also staying the Blue Flag certification process for Miramar beach.
Blue Flag certification is an international standard awarded to beaches which are environment and tourism-friendly with amenities for the visitors.
In his petition, Shetye has argued that Miramar beach already has the facilities required as per Blue Flag certification standards and that to permit the same facilities “up to a distance of 10 metres from the HTL was not necessary and if permitted would result in environmental damage.”
In July this year, the MoEF had issued a notification, which shortlisted 12 beaches across the country for Blue Flag certification, with an objective to improve the quality and environment standards of the beaches.
The notification also allowed for putting up of facilities at a distance of 10 metres from the high tide line, which the petitioner has objected to.