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I have been forced to 'regularise illegality': Jairam

Last updated on: May 6, 2011 17:15 IST

I have been forced to 'regularise illegality': Jairam

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Opposing 'regularisation of illegality' which he described as 'a peculiar Indian characteristic', Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh on Friday said that many times he too has been forced to compromise in cases of violations of green norms.

Referring to his ministry's order on the demolition of the Adarsh Housing Society, he said a signal has to go that violation of law would not be tolerated.

"I am totally against regularising illegality," Ramesh said while interacting at a conference organised by the All India Management Association in New Delhi.

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Image: Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh.
Photographs: Reuters
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I have been forced to 'regularise illegality': Jairam

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Responding to a question regarding the demolition of huge illegal constructions, the minister said his decision to order demolition of Adarsh Housing Society in Mumbai was to 'send a signal' to the people who violate laws.

"In the case of Adarsh, matter is in the court and I don't want to say anything more. But my decision was very clear. The only option before me was to recommend complete demolition of Adarsh. Signal has to go to the people who violate law that violation of law will not be tolerated," he said.

"Regularisation of illegality is a peculiar Indian characteristic. First you make the law and then break law," he said.

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Image: The Lavasa township near Pune.
Photographs: Courtesy, Lavasa website
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I have been forced to 'regularise illegality': Jairam

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"Unfortunately many times I am forced to regularise because I have no option . . . because one refinery has been built . . . steel plant is built. So I am guilty in some cases of having actually condone many environmental violations," Ramesh said.

"There are some occasions that I have not compromised. In some occasions I had to compromise," he said.

Narrating the practice of construction of ports, cement factories and power plants being built violating laws, the minister said in such cases 'huge expenditure has been incurred' and 'one has to be practical' when taking action.

"But at some points of time, the signal has to go that laws are laws and they should not be violated," Ramesh said.


Photographs: Reuters
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