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Gauhati High Court disposes of PIL regarding passage of National Highway 17 through villages

The Gauhati High Court disposed of a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed raising a grievance that the proposed National Highway 17 is to pass through their respective villages, which might disrupt their lives and virtually destroy their habitat.

The PIL stated that proceedings under Section 3A of the National Highways Act, 1956 have already been initiated with the issuance of Notifications dated 10.03.2023; 20.01.2023 and 28.02.2023.

The petitioners claim that they have filed objections under Section 3C of the 1956 Act. The only submission advanced by the learned counsel for the petitioners before the Court is that the National Highway Authorities may be directed to consider such objections as per law.

C. Baruah, standing counsel, National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and R.K. Talukdar, standing counsel, National Highways & Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (NHIDCL) have not disputed the fact that the representation/objection filed by the petitioners under Section 3C of the 1956 Act has to be considered as per the mandate of the said Act.

Thus, requiring the respondent authorities to objectively consider the representation dated 12.04.2023 filed by the petitioners in the letter and spirit of the provisions of the Act of 1956, the instant petition is disposed of by the Division Bench of Chief Justice Sandeep Mehta and Justice Devashis Baruah .

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