The NGT ordered that any institution that fails to install a rainwater harvesting system within the stipulated time will be liable to pay a compensation of Rs 5 lakh.
The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has ordered all government and private schools and colleges in the national capital to install rainwater harvesting system within 2 months at their own cost. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Swatanter Kumar gave this verdict on Thursday. The NGT ordered that any institution that fails to install a rainwater harvesting system within the stipulated time will be liable to pay a compensation of Rs 5 lakh. The NGT implemented this order after the Supreme Court appointed Environment Pollution Control Authority (EPCA) ordered lifting of a ban on entering of trucks and on construction related activities after the quality of air improve to ‘very poor’ in the capital region.
The national tribunal directed schools and colleges to approach a committee to complete the procedure constituted by it. The procedure will involve the green tribunal committee inspecting the premises and granting permission to institutions for operating the system. The committee includes senior officials from the education department of the Delhi government, Delhi Jal Board, Public Works Department, representative of Central Groundwater Authority and others. The committee formed has been asked to deal with the applications from schools and colleges.
“The committee shall meet twice a month and deal with the application of the schools and colleges expeditiously,” the bench said. The National Green Tribunal also directed that if it not possible for any institution to install a rainwater harvesting system within their premises, the institution should approach the committee within one week of the announcement of installation of rainwater harvesting system.
The bench further said that, the committee will inspect the premises of the school and upon inspection if any possibility of not setting up such system arises then the panel may issue exemption certificate. Further, any school getting an exemption certificate shall be entitled to environment compensation which can be used to set up harvesting systems in possible areas nearby the educational institutions.
According to PTI report, the green panel has directed the Delhi Jal Board and Delhi education department to issue notices to all educational institutes within three days from the date of announcement i.e. November 16, 2017. NGT’s decision on rainwater harvesting came while disposing a plea by Mahesh Chandra Saxena who claimed to be working on groundwater harvesting and is also linked to a NGO who has done extensive work on this, the PTI said.