The beleaguered and controversial Goa BJP Vice President Anil Hoble has lost his last ditch battle in the Supreme Court to save his illegal structures including the River Lounge Bar & Restaurant along the Ribandar-Panaji causeway. The Supreme Court has dismissed his appeal and upheld the National Green Tribunal (NGT) Pune Bench’s order to demolish the illegal structures including the Hoble River Lounge Bar and Restaurant that was inaugurated by then Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on 1st April 2014.
The NGT by its order on 29th May 2015 while ordering the demolition of the illegal structures had held that Anil Hoble violated various provisions of the environmental law and also directed him to pay a fine of 20 lakhs for destroying mangroves and doing illegal land filling.
A three- Judge Bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur agreed with the NGT’s finding that the structures were constructed after the CRZ policy came into force on 19.02.1991 and it being unauthorized structures cannot be used for any purpose whatsoever and was required to be demolished.
The Bench, which also comprised of Justices A M Khanwilkar and Dr D Y Chandrachud, held that the NGT’s finding and consequential directions to demolish the structures and a fine of Rs 20 lakh was “unassailable”. It said there is nothing to doubt the NGT’s findings that Hoble’s structures were within 100 metres from the high tide line and cannot be allowed to remain so.
The Bench further noted that the structure that existed on the plot bought by Anil Hoble in August 1992 was a small one in a corner of the plot used only as a garage for repairs of vehicles while the structures ordered to be demolished now were completely different in shape, size and location.
A Division bench of the Bombay High Court at Goa comprising of Justice F.M.Reis and Justice Nutan Sardessai on 29th June had dismissed Anil Hoble’s second petition challenging the order of the National Green Tribunal directing the demolition of his illegal structures.
Anil Hoble had submitted before the High Court that his Bar & Restaurant was legal and existed since 1960 but it was pointed out to the Court that Anil Hoble had been misleading the Courts and other authorities with fabricated documents obtained by flexing his political muscles.
Earlier on June 8th a Division Bench of the Bombay High Court at Mumbai comprising of Justice A.V.Mohta and Justice A.S.Gadkari dismissed the petition filed by Anil Hoble challenging the NGT order after it was pointed out to the Court that Anil Hoble had fraudulently obtained a stay order from the High Court in Mumbai despite the Bombay High Court at Goa having dismissed his first petition.
The BJP Government in a very devious and deceitful move to attempt shielding Anil Hoble had got Additional Solicitor General Atmaram Nadkarni to appear for the State of Goa before the Supreme Court on 23rd of last month when the final arguments were heard. But the Court was not swayed or misled but has upheld the law bringing to an end this protracted battle to protect the environment and deter other violators.
With the Supreme Court dismissing Anil Hoble’s petition the decks have now cleared for the Tiswadi Deputy Collector to swiftly demolish the illegal structures and to recover the fine of Rs twenty lakhs unless Anil Hoble gets a stay order from the International Court of Justice in Hague.