The National Green Tribunal has slapped a fine of Rs 1.5 lakh on Uttar Pradesh-based industrial unit after its chemical factory was shut down following a gas leak a year ago. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar directed the Garhmukteshwar-based unit Thermo Plus Technology which was shut down by the UP Pollution Control Board, to deposit the amount with the board in three weeks.
The order came on a plea filed by Hapur resident Krishankant Singh Hoon and other people living in the Luhari Mustafabad village, seeking damage and compensation due to the leakage of harmful gases from the chemical factory. While Rs one lakh will be deposited by the unit with the state pollution control board, the remaining amount would be distributed as compensation among the victims of the gas leak who had approached the tribunal for relief, it said.
“The respondent unit shall abide by its statement. In the event of non-payment of environmental compensation, the same will be recovered by the SDM of the concerned area as arrear of land revenue,” the bench warned.
The counsel for the unit told the bench that the industry has been lying closed since May 31, 2016, after the district administration “forcibly” shut it down following the gas leak.
He said its machinery has been partly dismantled and the premises will not be used for manufacturing of acetic acid and related chemicals.
The petition, filed through advocate Rahul Choudhary, has also sought a health survey of the area affected by the leak with respect to long term impact of inhaling polluted air and provide proper medical assistance to the villagers.