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The SC lifts the embargo for development of greenfield airport at Mopa, Goa.

Supreme Court of India

Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justice Hemant Gupta

The SC { Hanuman Laxman Aroskar v. Union of India & Ors.} holds that the evaluation of merits is a matter which primarily rests with an expert authority. The court can certainly supervise procedural compliance and ensure that all necessary inputs which are required to be factored into the decision making process have been duly borne in mind. Once this has been done, the court must be circumspect in micro-managing the decision-making process by the EAC by substituting its own opinion for that of the EAC. Undoubtedly, no process can be perfect or free from studied criticism.

Having assessed the process which took place following the judgment,  and the outcome, it was held that it would be difficult for the Court to hold that it fails to meet the standards which the court applies in the course of judicial review in environmental matters. 

In the present case, the Union of India through the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change moved the proceedings before the SC, seeking a direction that the Minutes of the fortieth meeting of the Expert Appraisal Committee dated 23 April 2019 be taken on the record so that the embargo imposed on the Environmental Clearance for a greenfield airport at Mopa Goa can be lifted. The SC has allowed the application paving the way for development of airport at Mopa, Goa.

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