In court

Published: Sunday 30 November 2008

State's prerogative: A division bench of the Bombay High Court on October 22 observed that the state government has the power to change a green zone into an industrial area. The court was hearing a PIL filed by Shetkari Sangarsh Samiti, a farmers' organization based in Shahpur in Maharashtra's Raigad district. The farmers had opposed land acquisition by the state government for the Maharashtra Energy Generation Ltd--a subsidiary of Reliance Energy--that proposes to build a 4,000 mw natural gas and coal-based plant in Shahpur. The farmers had contended that the land acquisition violates Coastal Regulatory Zone norms. Assistant government pleader Pradeep Patil, however, told the court that under the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning Act, the state could change the zoning of a plot. The court accepted this.

Jailed for killing Gir lions: In the biggest ever conviction in wildlife crime in the country, a sessions court in Junagadh, Gujarat, recently convicted 19 people for poaching 10 lions in the Gir National Park in March 2007. Charged under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, they were sentenced three years of jail and fined Rs 10,000 each. Wildlife conservationists termed the judgment landmark because the court disposed of the case quickly, unlike most wildlife cases.

Bangladesh acts on melamine: The High Court of Bangladesh asked the government to ban the display and sale of eight foreign milk powder brands, after the University of Dhaka confirmed melamine contamination. The eight banned brands are Australia's Diploma and Red Cow, Denmark's Dano Full Cream, China's Yashli-1, Yashli- 2 and Sweet Baby, and New Zealand's Nido Fortified Instant and Anlene. Eight human rights organizations filed pil s in the court following melamine contamination scare in China.

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