In a recent update, the Supreme Court has redirected a petition from an environmentalist based in Vijayawada regarding construction activities on Rushikonda Hill in Visakhapatnam. The Chief Justice of India, DY Chandrachud, who leads the bench, mentioned that there are ongoing cases related to this matter in the Andhra Pradesh High Court. Therefore, the Supreme Court suggested that the petitioners should file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the state high court instead.
This situation stems from a government order (GO 2015) issued by the Andhra Pradesh State Government in October. The GO stated that government officials, including ministers, would make regular visits to the north coastal Andhra region to oversee welfare and development activities. Chief Minister Jagan reiterated this during a cabinet meeting, instructing officials to work with the district collector and Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC) to establish an office for government work and ministers’ accommodation.
In response to this, an environmentalist named Lingamaneni Sivaram Prasad from Vijayawada filed a petition to challenge the government order, claiming that it violated certain provisions of the Indian constitution (Article 21 and 48/A). He also sought a halt to construction work on Rushikonda Hill in Visakhapatnam until the cases in the Andhra Pradesh High Court and the National Green Tribunal (NGT) were resolved.
The Supreme Court bench, led by the Chief Justice, advised the petitioners to bring their case as a Public Interest Litigation to the state high court.