Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman, Aniruddha Bose and V. Ramasubramanian observed that the substantial issues that arose in common for both the islands have already been answered in Vaamika Island (supra) and therefore it is not inclined to take a different view in these cases. It said:

The Supreme Court has upheld a Kerala High Court order which had directed removal of constructions violating 1991 CRZ norms in Nediyanthuruthu , an island in Vembanad region of Alapuzha District in Kerala.

Kapico Kerala Resorts Pvt. Ltd. had approached the Apex Court challenging the Kerala High Court judgment which held that the constructions made by it in the Island violates the terms of the 1991 CRZ Notification.

The High Court had passed a common judgment with respect to writ petitions challenging the construction of resorts in two backwater islands, by name Vettila Thuruthu and Nediyathuruthu. As regards, the former island, the Supreme Court in Vaamika Island v. Union of India, had upheld the High Court judgment.

The bench comprising Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman, Aniruddha Bose and V. Ramasubramanian observed that the substantial issues that arose in common for both the islands have already been answered in Vaamika Island (supra) and therefore it is not inclined to take a different view in these cases. It said:
“Both Vettila Thuruthu and Nediyathuruthu islands are admittedly backwater islands nestled in Vembanad lake. In paragraph 27 of the judgment in Vaamika Island, this Court has indicated that Vembanad lake is an ecologically sensitive area and that considering the socio­-economic importance of this water body, it had been scheduled under “vulnerable wetlands to be protected” and declared as CVCA. We do not know how this finding can be held to be applicable only to Vettlia Thuruthu island.”

One of the alternative submission made was that, even if all the constructions put up by them are now demolished, the appellants will be entitled to build once again, approximately 60 per cent of the area covered by the existing superstructures.

Referring to the 2019 Notification, the bench observed:
“the situation has gone from bad to worse. Under the 2011 Notification the areas identified in the Notification had to be declared as CVCAs only through a process of consultation with local fisher, etc. Guidelines are to be put in place for identifying, notifying and implementing CVCA but 2019 Notification straightaway treats the named areas as CVCAs and vests their management with the Authority with the involvement of coastal communities. Therefore, the alternatives claimed by the appellants also do not appear to be viable for them. ” 


Case name: Kapico Kerala Resorts Pvt. Ltd. vs. State of Kerala
Case no.: Civil Appeal Nos. 184­-186 of 2020 
Coram : Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman, V. Ramasubramanian and Aniruddha Bose 
Counsel for Appellant: Senior Advocate Dr. A. M. Singhvi
Counsel for Respondents: Senior Advocates Sanjay Parikh and Pallav Shishodia 
Click here to Read/Download Judgment



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