The National Green Tribunal has come down heavily on the Centre and the Delhi government for “demur and default” in implementing its orders on the revitalisation plan of Yamuna river.
The tribunal had pronounced a detailed judgment on “Maily Se Nirmal Yamuna Revitalization Plan-2017” on January 13, which dealt with cleaning of the river and had enumerated complete mechanism for restoration of its “pristine” nature.
“It is commonly known and even expected that government of India as well as Delhi government would be implementing the judgment. Thus various directions were passed from time to time in relation to implementation of the judgement to ensure that the project is completed by 2017.
“We must notice that there has been a definite demur and default on the part of the government and its various departments and instrumentalities in implementing judgement…
“It not only appears, but it is certain that there is no cooperation and coordination between the various departments. We do record with great disappointment that the environment is the victim of all this,” a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said.
The tribunal noted that the officers concerned have failed to sit together to execute the directions of the bench and rather engaged in “blame game” to shift their responsibilities.
The green bench further said the tribunal had to adjourn cases for weeks for getting information on day-to-day basis despite stating that the matter would be taken up on day-to-day hearing from July, 2015.
However, matter could not be concluded even on the aspect of Common Effluent Treatment Plants (CETPs) due to need of requisite information and data by various departments of NCT, Delhi and its instrumentalities, it said.
“Right to decent and clean environment particularly water is a fundamental right to enforcement of the fundamental right particularly in the field of environment which is duly covered by the schedule Act. The State could hardly raise any defence including the finances.
“It is the clear dictum of law declared by Supreme Court of India in its various judgements. The government has to find a way to implement the judgement expeditiously and effectively and by a coordinated and cooperative functioning of all the departments concerned,” the bench said.