A luxurious farmhouse with a pool built allegedly for Telangana Minister KT Rama Rao in a restricted zone near reservoirs supplying water to Hyderabad will be investigated by a committee, the National Green Tribunal said in a notice on Friday.
The southern bench of the tribunal issued notices to the Telangana government and Municipal Administration Minister Mr Rao for allegedly violating a 1996 government order that prohibits any construction in the catchment areas of Himayat Sagar and Osman Sagar reservoirs within a 10km radius.
The petition, filed by Congress leader Revanth Reddy who sought Mr Rao's resignation to facilitate fair probe, states the farmhouse has been built in a bioconservation zone near Janwada village of Ranga Reddy district.
The NGT has ordered formation of a fact-finding committee - comprising members from the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests and Climate Change, the state irrigation department, the Telangana State Pollution Control Board, the Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation and lake officials - and sought a report within two months.
In March, Mr Reddy had released aerial images of the farmhouse and had alleged that it belongs to Mr Rao even though it is registered in someone else's name. The images were shot using a drone camera. Afterwards, a case was filed against six people for using drone cameras without permission and the Congress leader was sent to jail for a week.