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Green tribunal warns ministry

delhi Updated: Sep 07, 2013 01:49 IST
Darpan Singh
Darpan Singh
Hindustan Times
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The National Green Tribunal on Friday ordered the ministry of environment and forests to come clean on the issue of rainwater harvesting at Metro stations or face a fine of Rs 10,000.

The state governments in Uttar Pradesh and Haryana will have to file replies or face similar penalty.

None of the three parties have responded despite repeated reminders. The matter would be heard next on September 26.

The green tribunal had on April 12 issued notices and sought the responses of the ministry, the two states, the Central Ground Water Authority, Central Ground Water Board, the Delhi government and the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation on a plea filed by one Vikrant Tongad.

While the rest of the parties have already filed their replies, the UP and Haryana governments and the environment ministry are yet to do so.

HT had earlier reported that the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) had on July 5 admitted before the tribunal that 42 of its 105 elevated stations do not have rainwater harvesting facilities. None of the six stations in Noida can store rainwater.

Of the seven maintenance depots, only the one at Sarita Vihar has this facility.

Tongad has accused the DMRC of not ensuring rainwater harvesting at many Metro stations in Delhi-NCR, wasting 8 crore litres of precious water every monsoon.

The DMRC said many of the stations were located on congested roads so it was difficult to build underground tanks.

Petitioner’s lawyer Rahul Choudhary said, “It’s a lame excuse. DMRC can build stations building on same roads but not water tanks, while both had to be done together.”