Shiv Sena minister Anil Parab’s aide, businessman Sadanand Kadam, sought a stay on the demolition order passed by the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) for a Dapoli resort in Maharashtra, but the bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Madhav Jamdar decided to give an early hearing instead.
Advocates Saket Mone and Devansh Shah representing Kadam told the court on Thursday that the order was passed without hearing from the affected party. Kadam is said to be a close aide of former Maharashtra cabinet minister Anil Parab and his statement has also been recorded.
In 2011, a Pune resident purchased 1-acre agricultural land at Dapoli from seven different people. He sold 4,200 square metres of land to Parab in 2017 for Rs 1 crore, although the sale deed was executed in 2019. Subsequently, Sai Resort was constructed on the plot and Parab sold it to Sadanand Kadam for Rs 1.1 crore.
Kadam is one of those persons whose statements were recorded by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in its case against Parab. However, the MoEF too had issued the demolition after it allegedly noticed coastal regulation zone violations.
The MoEF direction under section 5 of the Environment Protection Act for razing was issued on January 31. Later on August 22, a subsequent order imposing a fine of Rs 25 lakh was issued for environmental compensation. However, on August 25, the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority (MCZMA) issued a letter to the Ratnagiri collector asking for a report on the action.
Fearing that there would be the action of razing the resort, Kadam approached the court and mentioned the plea last week. The plea finally came up for a hearing on Thursday where Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh sought time. The bench said that they would be hearing the petition on September 26.
In the plea, Kadam stated that the original plan was to utilise Dapoli land for personal use. However, looking at the rise of tourism in Dapoli, he decided to develop a commercial space/resort. Kadam clarified that the structure being constructed on the plot was not complete and hence was not being utilised for personal or commercial purposes.
The plea stated that the issue cropped up only due to political rivalries of Parab because of which “several false, frivolous, vexatious and mala fide complaints and proceedings came to be initiated/instituted by the political rivals of Parab in respect of Dapoli land.”