The Delhi High Court on Monday dismissed a petition seeking a halt on the ongoing construction of the Central Vista Project in New Delhi amid the Coronavirus outbreak.
The Court was hearing a plea for suspending the ongoing construction work during the COVID pandemic. The petitioners argued that the Central Vista project was not an essential activity and can be put on hold in light of the pandemic.
The bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh observed that, “The present petition has been filed to stop with immediate effect the work of the redevelopment of Central Vista Avenue. This work is part and parcel of Central Vista Project and of vital public importance. The construction of Central Vista Avenue Redevelopment Project cannot be seen in isolation. In fact, the whole Central Vista Project is an essential project of National importance, where the sovereign functions of Parliament are also to be conducted. Public is vitally interested in this project.”
The court said under the contract, the work had to be completed by November 2021 and therefore, it should to be allowed to continue. It said the legality of the project was already upheld by the Supreme Court.
“The work has to be completed within time-bound schedule. Petitioners have casually argued that the time limit be extended. Such kind of arguments cannot be accepted by this Court, keeping in view that the construction activity of this essential project or of a project of national importance cannot be stopped especially when the conditions imposed by the order of the DDMA dated 19th April, 2021 as mentioned in paragraph-8 thereof are not flouted or violated.” the Court said.
The bench further said that the petition is a motivated petition preferred by the petitioners and not a genuine public interest litigation.