On 30th June 2020 The Delhi High Court directed the Central Government to publish a draft Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) notification 2020 in all 22 official languages. A division bench comprising of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan passed a Judgment with respect to seeking an extension of the time to respond to the draft EIA till September filed by environmentalist Vikrant Tongad.
The court by extending the deadline till 11th August 2020 further asked the Government to publish the draft in all 22 languages as mentioned in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution within 10 days.
The bench said, “Looking to the far-reaching consequences of the public consultation process for which the draft notifications has been published, we are of the view that it would be in aid of effective dissemination of the proposed notification if arrangements are made for its translation into other languages as well, at least those mentioned in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution.”
Attention was brought to this point after Petitioner pointed out the draft is published in English and Hindi only whereas this draft will be proposed all over the country. He further stated that even in past the Government has published draft in other languages.
The court allowed that prayer and stated that the translation will be undertaken by the Government of India and in case any help is needed it can take the assistance of State Government.
The bench added, “Such translations should also be published through the website of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India as well as on websites of Environment Ministries of all the states as well as those of State Pollution Control Board, within ten days from today.”