The National Green Tribunal on Thursday issued contempt notice to the Art of Living foundation’s Sri Sri Ravi Shankar on a plea against him for blaming the Centre and the panel for damaging Yamuna floodplains by allowing his NGO to hold a cultural extravaganza.

A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar issued notice to Ravi Shankar while seeking his reply before May 9, the next date of hearing.

The plea filed by activist Manoj Misra has sought action against Ravi Shankar and said his remarks interfered with with free and fair dispensation of justice.

b’Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (second from left) with PM Modi at the AOL event | Source: PTI’

In a statement published on the Art of Living ’s website, Ravi Shankar had blamed the government and the NGT for permitting Art of Living to hold the function and said his foundation had obtained all necessary permissions, including from the green panel, and the event could have been stopped in the beginning itself if the river was so “fragile and pure”.

In the plea filed through advocates Ritwick Dutta and Rahul Choudhary, Mr. Misra said the Art of Living head was “in the habit” of making statements to “denigrate the dignity and status of this tribunal, which was an interference in the fair dispensation of justice”, that is the bedrock of the rule of law.