Environmental Protection Licence issued to Pannipitiya bus garage quashed by Appeal Court
The Court of Appeal has issued a writ certiorari, quashing the Environmental Protection Licence (EPL) issued to a bus repair garage in a residential area in Pannipitiya.
The Court of Appeal two-judge-bench comprising Justice Mohammed Laffar and Justice K.K.A.V. Swarnadhipathi has held that the concerned EPL had been issued by the Chairperson of Maharagama Urban Council contrary to the National Environmental Act, No. 47 of 1980 for the reason that the garage is in a Residential Area contrary to the Zoning Plan.
The Court further held that the EPL has been issued to the bus repair garage based on alleged misrepresentative founding of the Technical Evaluation Committee of the Central Environmental Authority.
The Court of Appeal made this order consequent to a writ petition filed by Udeni Janaka Perera, a resident of Pannipitiya complaining that an individual named Janaka Kumara Elvitigala is operating a bus repair garage causing serious health hazards to the area residents.
The petitioner stated that repairing of buses and spray painting were carried out in an open area. The petitioner further alleged that the garage is in a Residential Area identified under the Development Plan. The petitioner argued that operating a garage is not identified a permissible user under the Development Plan.
Counsel Faisza Marker, instructed by Hasna Mohamed appeared for the Petitioner. President’s Counsel Udith Egalahewa appeared for the garage owner.
Senior Additional Solicitor General Farzana Jameel appeared for the Attorney General.