Case Number: Writ Petition No.5663 of 2000
Date of filing: 2000/11/20
- Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST)
- Secretary, Ministry of Environment and Forest;
- Secretary, Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs;
- Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Public Works;
- Secretary, Ministry of Land;
- Chairman, Chittagong Development Authority (CDA);
- Director General, Department of Environment;
- Commissioner, Chittagong Metropolitan Police;
- M/S Nasirabad Properties Ltd, Chittagong
BLAST filed a writ petition challenging the alleged unplanned, unauthorised and indiscriminate cutting of hills in different parts of Chittagong City and also impugning Section 3C of the Building Construction Act, 1952 (BCA) as amended in 1990. Section 3C of the BCA empowered the authorised officer to accord approval for cutting and razing hills subject to terms and conditions as he deemed fit with the order to remain valid for one year, subject to withdrawal by the Government. Under the purported authority of Section 3C of the BCA, the authorised officer permitted Nasirabad Properties Ltd. to raze hills for a period of one year, with further extensions, but the authorised officer withheld further permissions before the leveling of the demolished hills was completed. There was no initiative from the Government to level the damaged hills and clean the silted area, further contributing to the environmental degradation of the area and resulting in serious apprehensions of landslide. The local people made various appeals to the authorities without any response.
The High Court issued a Rule Nisi directing the respondents to show cause as to why Section 3C of the Building Construction Act, 1952 should not be declared to be without any lawful authority and of no legal effect and why the respondents should not be directed to level and clear the demolished hill at mouzaDhakinPahartali, Chittagong. The Court later directed the respondents to submit a report regarding the information sought by the petitioners. On their failure to do so, the Court directed them to show cause as to why action should not be taken against them for their non-compliance with the Court’s order.
Mr Justice Mohammad Gholam Rabbani
Ms Justice Nazmun Ara Sultana
Area of law
Chittagong Hill Cutting Case
Constitution, Article 31, 32, 102 (1) (2);
Building Construction Act 1952, Section 3C;
Environmental Conservation Act, 1995 and Rules 1997
The Court ordered the appearance in person of the respondents to explain their non-compliance. On 29.10.2002, Respondednt no.7 appeared before the Court personally, and an affidavit of compliance and affidavit of explanation were filed with the Court.
Mr Justice Shah Abu Nayeem Mominur Rahman
Mr Justice Md Arayesuddin
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