NGT summons officials over rampant waste burning in Delhi-NCR

By: | Updated: March 31, 2017 5:03 PM

The green panel directed sub-divisional magistrates concerned, Member Secretary of the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) and officials of the Noida Development Authority to be present before it on the next date of hearing and submit a comprehensive report on the issue.

A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said that fire at waste dumping sites produces harmful gases, hazardous to health and the environment. (Reuters)

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) took strong exception today to rampant incidents of waste burning in National Capital Region and summoned top officials to explain the reasons behind it. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said that fire at waste dumping sites produces harmful gases, hazardous to health and the environment. The green panel directed sub-divisional magistrates concerned, Member Secretary of the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) and officials of the Noida Development Authority to be present before it on the next date of hearing and submit a comprehensive report on the issue.

“The counsel appearing for the applicant has brought before us photographs showing burning of leaves and waste along the Yamuna river and either side of Delhi-Noida Direct (DND) flyway. “They have also filed photographs showing Bhalswa municipal solid waste site on fire. We direct the SDM concerned, Member Secretary of UPPCB and official from Noida Development Authority to be present before the tribunal on the next date of hearing,” the bench, also comprising Justice R S Rathore, said.

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The top environment watchdog also lambasted the municipal corporations in the national capital for not devising a mechanism for dumping dry leaves in pits so that these were not burnt. It also directed the committee, constituted by the NGT and headed by the secretary of Delhi government’s Urban Development Department, to inspect and file a report on indiscriminate burning of waste in dumping sites at Ghazipur and Bhalswa here. The matter has been posted for hearing on April 20.

The green body had yesterday issued notice to the governments of Delhi and Uttar Pradesh on a plea alleging indiscriminate burning of municipal solid waste in Delhi and NCR despite a ban being in force. It had sought response from the governments, Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC), UP Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) on the issue. “What is this going on? Issue notice to governments of NCT Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, DPCC, UPPCB,” the bench had said. The order came after advocates Sanjay Upadhyay and Saliq Shafique told the green panel that repeated incidents of waste burning were taking place in several areas across Delhi-NCR.
The lawyers, appearing for Vardhaman Kaushik who has filed a petition on deteriorating air quality in Delhi and NCR, said that despite various orders being passed by the NGT and undertaking given by the authorities concerned there was indiscriminate dumping and burning of municipal solid waste in various parks. Imposing a complete ban on burning of waste in open including garbage, leaves, plastic and crop residues, the National Green Tribunal had earlier said violators will be fined Rs 5,000.

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