Karnataka HC dismisses plea against Isha Foundation’s Cauvery Calling Project

Karnataka High Court Law Insider
Karnataka High Court Law Insider

Greeva Garg –

Published on: September 8, 2021, at 10:36 IST

The Karnataka High Court has dismissed a PIL seeking directions to restrain Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev’s Isha Outreach Foundation from collecting funds from public for its Cauvery Calling Project.

The project is missioned for revitalising rivers that has dried up, byway of planting tree saplings along the Cauvery river bed.

The petition alleged that the Foundation is planting saplings on the Government lands and collecting the money for the same from the public.

The petitioner contended that Government has allowed its land to be used by a private organisation, without studying the pros and cons of the project.

The Court in its recent Judgement opined that respondent is not resorting its activities on the Governmental land and it is not a crime to plant trees on barren land.

“Afforestation has become very necessary keeping in view the present scenario and such activities need appreciation rather than putting spokes in carrying out projects like Cauvery Calling”, the Court observed while dismissing the PIL filed by Advocate AV Amarnathan.

The Court said that the question of interference will not arise by this Court in such a noble project.

A Division bench of Acting Chief Justice Satish Chandra and Justice Sachin Shankar Magadum while holding that the petition was a frivolous petition and deserved to be dismissed, stated, “Planting trees on a barren land is not a crime, though Isha Outreach is not planting trees on Government land. In case such a view is taken that planting trees on Government land is prohibited, it will create havoc and a large number of plantations which are going on government land by NGO without any motive will come to a standstill.”

Last year, the Court has decided to take the issue on its Suo-Moto cognizance and directed the State Government to present before the Court any statutory provision of law which restrains individual from planting trees on the Governmental land. However, no such report was served in the Court by the State.

Click here to read/download the order

Also Read: Karnataka HC reserves Order In Plea Against ‘Cauvery Calling Project’

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