New Delhi: In a setback to the Art of Living Foundation of spiritual leader Ravi Shankar, the National Green Tribunal said that Aol is responsible for causing damage and environmental degradation of the Yamuna floodplains due to the holding of World Cultural Festival in 2016.
While refusing to impose an additional environment fine on the AoL which has already deposited Rs 5 crore, the NGT ordered the DDA to use this amount to restore the floodplains and bill the AoL if the cost is more or return to it the balance if the cost is below that amount.
Ordering that the Yamuna riverbed should not be used to hold any cultural activity of this kind in future, the green panel directed the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) to assess the damage caused on floodplains and compute the cost of restoration in line with the recommendations of the expert panel appointed by it.
The expert panel had earlier told the NGT that an estimated Rs 42.02 crore would be required to restore Yamuna floodplains which were ravaged due to the cultural extravaganza.
In a statement, the AoL termed the verdict as "erroneous and untenable" and said they did not agree with it and will approach the Supreme Court.