Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Sri Sri Ravi ShankarReuters

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Tuesday rejected the Art of Living Foundation's (AOL) plea about paying the remaining amount of the environmental compensation levied on them in bank guarantee over the alleged damage to the Yamuna floodplains in Delhi. The foundation said on Tuesday that the verdict was unjust and it would approach the Supreme Court, if needed.

The NGT on Tuesday directed the AOL Foundation, which was founded by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, to pay the remaining Rs. 4.75 crore of the compensation levied on them under Section 15 and 17 of the NGT Act for allegedly damaging the Yamuna bank in New Delhi while preparing for the World Culture Festival in March.

"We don't agree with the observations of the Tribunal. The Art of Living has neither polluted air, water or earth. We have left the WCF site in a better condition than what we had got. We have an extensive repertoire for environment work and find these allegations unacceptable," the foundation told the International Business Times, India in a statement.

The foundation had filed an application with the NGT to reconstitute a new panel that would examine the damages, if any, to the area where the World Culture Festival was hosted, they said in a statement on Monday.

The green tribunal, meanwhile, accused the foundation of attempting to get out without paying the compensation by initiating multiple litigations.

"Your conscience should be clear, let people say what they want to. You fulfil your obligations," the NGT bench told the Art of Living counsel on Tuesday, a reported by the Hindustan Times.

The foundation in a statement said: "The Art of Living has never said that we don't have funds. We were ready and willing to give a bank guarantee which served the purpose but our application has been wrongly dismissed. We will test the legality and see how we can correct the judgement."

The foundation, which believes that the probe done by the expert panel was not scientific and based on visual assessment, has said that it is "not happy and will consider all options."