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    HomeAndhra PradeshEx-bureaucrat urges Centre to demolish Rushikonda palace and bill AP Govt for...

    Ex-bureaucrat urges Centre to demolish Rushikonda palace and bill AP Govt for expenses.

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    Former Secretary to the Government of India E A S Sarma wrote a letter to the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests, and Climate Change demanding the demolition of illegal structures built on Rushikonda in Visakhapatnam by the Andhra Pradesh Government for tourism development.

    In his letter dated July 14, 2023, Sarma asked the Ministry to cancel the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) approval given to AP Tourism Development Corporation (APTDC) for modifying its tourist facility on Rushikonda Hill. He mentioned that APTDC violated multiple conditions of the CRZ approval order by constructing in unauthorized areas, dumping construction waste in CRZ stretches along the sea, and exceeding the approved construction limits set by the court.

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    Sarma highlighted that previous government officials did not inform the public about the construction violations at the complex. However, a recent survey by an expert committee appointed by the High Court exposed the unlawful construction activities undertaken by APTDC. Sarma emphasized that the current State government must take responsibility for these violations.

    He referenced a Supreme Court case in Kerala where illegal constructions were ordered to be demolished due to violations of the CRZ Notification. Sarma urged the Ministry to follow a similar approach with the Rushikonda complex, ordering the demolition of structures built in violation of CRZ regulations.

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    Sarma also suggested holding accountable those responsible for the violations, including recovering demolition costs and imposing penalties. Additionally, he criticized the Andhra Pradesh Coastal Zone Management Authority for failing to prevent widespread CRZ violations along the coast and causing environmental damage.

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