We need more time to deposit fine, Art of Living tells NGT

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 The Art of Living (AOL), which is organizing the World Culture Festival on the Yamuna floodplains, on Friday filed an appeal in the National Green Tribunal(NGT) saying it needs at least four weeks' time to deposit Rs 5-crore fine and to comply with all directions of the tribunal.

"We are a charitable organization and it is difficult for us to generate Rs 5 crore in a short period," the AOL said in its petition.

The AOL father said that "Rs 5-crore fine be taken as restoration amount for biodiversity park and not as penalty."

The NGT had said on Thursday that the AOL will have to deposit Rs 5-crore fine imposed on it by 5pm on Friday. If it failed to do so, the law will take its own course, the NGT said.

On Wednesday, the NGT had ordered AOL to pay the fine "prior to commencement of the event".

However, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, the founder of AOL, said on Thursday he would rather go to jail than pay the fine imposed by NGT for environmental violations on the floodplains due to massive constructions. He had also tweeted that AOL was not "satisfied" with the verdict of the NGT and would appeal against it, adding, "Satyamev Jayate".
 

On Thursday, The tribunal had refused to give an urgent hearing on a fresh plea seeking a stay on the three-day event, alleging that AOL has not taken permissions from the competent authorities as directed by the tribunal. "There is no urgency in it. You can file a proper application and point out the deficiencies in compliance with the directions of the tribunal. We will see if there is any breach or (something is) not as per the law," the bench said.

Posted By: chandrika

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