A letter is sent by concerned Aurovilians to the Secretary of the Auroville foundation regards to the demand of the ATDC about so-called unauthorized construction in Auroville.
Auroville Foundation Bhavan
Villupuram, Tamil Nadu 605101
It has come to our notice that the Auroville Town Development Council (ATDC) has issued a statement to the Auroville Community that “all unauthorised constructions in Auroville will need to be removed or repurposed until a renovation or removal, partial or full, is necessary”.
This is to let you know that no construction by the residents of Auroville is unauthorised as per the Auroville Foundation Act 1988 or Rules 1997, or any other statute / law in force. The residents, in fulfilling their statutory duties, have faithfully built the assets of Auroville, and the Foundation is not authorised to disturb or demolish any of its buildings in contravention to the Residents’ Assembly or its activities.
The ATDC has sent a letter to the Youth Centre stating “As per the NGT verdict, all unauthorised occupations will need to be dealt with immediately.” This is a vile and gross misrepresentation of the NGT’s judgement. The NGT simply stated that “The 1st Respondent is also at 𝐥𝐢𝐛𝐞𝐫𝐭𝐲 to take action against unauthorized occupations, if any, strictly in accordance with the law in force (emphasis supplied).”
The verdict cannot be misconstrued to mean that the NGT has given any specific direction to the Foundation to deal with unauthorised occupations. It is unfortunate that the ATDC has no understanding of the law when issuing notices of such nature, notwithstanding the fact that it does not have the legal authority to do so.
The Secretary and the ATDC cannot claim any part of Auroville’s assets, or any buildings at a whim and fancy, that the Residents of Auroville have built from their own efforts, or with support.
Furthermore, the Foundation is reminded that it is not authorised to do work anywhere in Auroville, except specifically on the parts of the crown that is the road. Even with the Crown road, the Foundation has been specifically directed to await the report of the joint Committee giving clear directions on the alignment, width and form of the crown road, and further, to follow in strict compliance, the said directions of the Joint Committee.
The Foundation will do well to follow the rule of law and to abstain from any clearing / development projects in Auroville until it has obtained Prior Environmental Clearance.
Residents of Auroville
ccd: Auroville Town Development Council
Working Committee of the Residents’ Assembly
Funds and Assets Management Committee
Residents’ Assembly Service