The National Green Tribunal has slapped fines on seven housing societies in the national capital for generating waste in large quantity and not complying with the solid waste management rules.
The National Green Tribunal has slapped fines on seven housing societies in the national capital for generating waste in large quantity and not complying with the solid waste management rules. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar imposed environment compensation on these societies after their lawyers contended that their houses were constructed long ago and they were complying with all environmental measures subject to their limitations.
They said the societies would take all appropriate steps to comply with the environmental laws and install anti- pollution devices to treat the pollutants. “In light of the above, each of the societies shall pay environmental compensation of Rs 10,000 to Delhi Pollution Control Committee within two weeks and would carry out all the compliance in relation to environmental laws and install anti-pollution devices within six months. The directions issued by joint inspection team shall also be complied with. “All these societies shall take steps for collecting the wastes, in their area, in a segregated manner and ensure its carriage to the identified dumping site,” the bench, also comprising Justice R S Rathore, said.
The societies are Jawaharlal Nehru Cooperative Group Housing Society Ltd, Jhang Cooperative Group Housing Ltd, Delhi Citizen Society, Neelkanth Apartments, Bharat Apartments, Printers Apartment and the Police Colony. During the proceedings, the counsel appearing for Jawaharlal Nehru Society told the bench that they were paying Rs 66,000 to Delhi Jal Board for discharge of their sewage in the sewer line. He said these housing societies were financially weak and hence only a token amount of environmental compensation should be imposed on them for the deficiencies pointed out by the inspecting team.
The NGT order came after it perused an interim report submitted by a committee set up by it which recommended action against defaulting bodies for improper management and treatment of sewage and lack of mechanism to recycle waste. The committee comprised representatives of the ministries of Environment and Urban Development, Director General of Health Services, Medical Council of India, DDA, municipal corporations, the Delhi government, Central Pollution Control Board, railways and Delhi Pollution Control Committee. It also had four independent experts. It had directed the committee to inspect all five-star hotels, hospitals which have more than 200 beds, cooperative group housing societies with over 300 flats, markets, shopping malls with built up area of over 50,000 sq mts, colleges having hostel accommodating more than 500 students in Delhi.
The green panel had earlier directed the Delhi government to provide a list of all mass generators of waste, while noting that the problem of waste generation was being faced by the entire country and urgent steps were needed to be taken without “demur and default”. The green body had noted that Delhi generates nearly 14,100 metric tonnes of municipal solid waste per day and said that the mass generators of waste cannot be equated to a simple households generating trash.