The National Green Tribunal (NGT), citing the polluter pays principle, on Tuesday observed that the South Delhi Municipal Corporation should challan all big commercial establishments like hospitals and malls Rs 50,000 per day if any municipal waste was found littered near their premises.
A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar, which took suo motu cognisance of the stinking garbage accumulated outside Max hospital in Saket, directed the South civic body to issue a challan of Rs 50,000 per day for each hospital, mall, cineplexes in the area for causing pollution and degrading the environment.
It also directed the legal officer of the corporation that in case these commercial establishments refused to pay the penalty after challans are issued, it may file a proper application in this regard.
SDMC’s legal officer Laveena Passi told the tribunal that according to directions of the green bench, the garbage outside Max hospital has been removed and they have also been instructed not to do so in future. However, the hospital and other commercial establishments said that they were not responsible for the waste and heap of garbage lying on the road.
The bench then observed, “If they don’t throw garbage, does it come from the sky? They cannot just keep on earning money. They should spend it as well. Why don’t you impose a fine of Rs 50,000 on each of them? As part of their corporate social responsibility, they are supposed to clean the garbage. You prepare an application, we will pass appropriate directions.”
During the hearing, advocate Balendu Shekhar, appearing for the South corporation, told the bench that there was Max hospital, Pushpawati Singhania Research Institute, Saket City Hospital, malls including Select Citywalk, MGF Metropolitan etc, shops, cineplexes like PVR, which were all equally responsible for the generation of waste.
The tribunal also directed the Delhi government to submit within two weeks an action plan on reduction of noise pollution caused due to heavy traffic near Panchsheel Park area in South Delhi.
The directions came while hearing a petition of Omesh Saigal, a resident of Panchsheel Park, who alleged that noise pollution, generated due to heavy flow of traffic on the Outer Ring road, was affecting the health of people living in the area.