The Delhi High Court has rapped authorities in the city saying had kept their eyes open, the national capital would not have become a “polluting city”. Expressing displeasure over the connivance of officials of municipal corporations in allowing industrial units in residential and non-conforming areas, a bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar asked the three civic bodies to conduct an inquiry and inform the court about zone-wise details of the industries, before February 19 next year. It directed the Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd (DSIIDC) to ensure strict action against 1,706 industrial complexes, which failed to construct or shift to that site despite it being allotted to them.
Noting this, the bench observed “in addition to the huge impact on account of illegal industrial activities continuing in non-conforming areas and usage of residential property for illegal industrial activities, public money is spent for maintaining these industrial complexes developed at a huge cost to the public exchequer”. “Additionally, these continued illegal industrial activities are putting a huge constraint on every resource of the city unreasonably and also putting a pressure on the available infrastructure and impacting the pollution levels,” the bench added. It said, “If the authorities would have kept their eyes open, Delhi would not have become a polluting city. The hospitals here would have less patients.”
The court’s direction came while hearing PIL filed by the Bawana Factory Welfare Association, which highlighted the failure of authorities to relocate industries from residential areas. The association also highlighted as to how the industrial plots allotted to the industries in industrial areas remain unused while factories continue to be operated from non-profit conforming areas.