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Buildings over 20,000 sq m to pay R5 lakh for dust pollution

delhi Updated: Jul 20, 2016 23:26 IST
HT Correspondent
environmental compensation

Dust from construction waste is one of the contributors to pollution in the city. A construction site on Bhairon Marg in New Delhi. (Ravi Choudhary/ HT File )

Construction sites above 20,000 sqm will be fined R 5 lakh for causing dust pollution and flouting environmental norms, the National Green Tribunal said on Wednesday.

A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said: “We hereby direct that construction sites built on a plot area of more than 20,000 square metre would be liable to pay environmental compensation of R 5,00,000 per violation.”

Asking municipal corporations and other authorities concerned to take strict action against violators, the green panel clarified that construction sites built on a plot area of 100 square metres will pay R 10,000 while buildings of 100 to 200 sqm will pay R 20,000 as environmental compensation.

“Buildings of plot size 200 to 500 square metres will pay Rs 30,000 while sites of 500 to 20,000 sqm will pay Rs 50,000 as environmental compensation,” it added.

Read more: Difficult to rein in, construction dust a major air polluter in Delhi

The tribunal had earlier directed civic bodies and government agencies in Delhi-NCR to submit a list of builders carrying out construction in areas over 2,000 square feet.

The NGT slammed municipal corporations over poor cleanliness in different parts of the capital, and asked civic bodies to “use machines to clean the roads”.

“Why can’t corporations use machines to clean the roads? Corporation staff sweeps and dumps garbage in drains. If not so, tell us how the drains are choked. Tell us one place which is free of dirt. We also live in Delhi. Don’t look left, right and centre. Your officers don’t want to do anything. Why do you need orders to think?

“Nothing substantial has come before us for the whole year. We have been asking corporations to clean the roads. At least you must try to think something. Don’t try to justify your wrongs,” a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said.

The observation came while hearing a plea filed by the East Delhi Municipal Corporation, which sought the NGT’s nod to buy tractors for waste collection.

The NGT had in a recent order, allowed corporations to buy only BS-IV vehicles. However, available tractors in the market were only BS-III complaint.

“Why do you want to buy tractors for collection of waste? Use advanced machines which suck the dust. Tractors are used in rural areas for agricultural purposes and for collection of cow dung. They cause so much pollution,” the bench said.