The national green tribunal (NGT) on Wednesday asked civic bodies to penalise individuals and vehicles found dumping waste in the Aravalli forest area.
The tribunal also demanded an explanation for the delay in complying with its January 22, 2016 order to stop dumping of construction and demolition (C&D) waste in the forest area.
The bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar asked the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG) why no steps were taken even six months after the petition was filed and an order issued to end dumping of waste in the forest area. Next hearing in this matter will be on August 23.
On January 22, the NGT had directed the MCG and the Haryana Urban Development Authority (Huda) to stop the practice of dumping construction waste in the Aravallis.
The NGT order came on a plea filed by environmentalist Vivek Kamboj, who alleged that the municipal corporations of Gurgaon and Faridabad were disposing of industrial waste and construction debris in forest areas along Gurgaon-Faridabad Road.
The area under dispute is notified under Section 4 and 5 of the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA), 1900, and as such non-forest activities are restricted there. The dumping of waste continues till date in the area , the petitioners alleged before the NGT.
Further, dumping of waste has also been noticed in the natural drain of Chakkarpur, which is being revived by the forest department.
Environmentalists said a special investigation team (SIT) was formed by the district administration to probe a case related to dumping of construction and development (C&D) waste in Aravalli forest area in January. It submitted its report in March and recommended that the government and private agencies be refrained from dumping waste in forest areas. Even after the report, nothing was done to curb the practice.
“The MCG officials informed the court that there are nine designated sites in the city to dump waste. However, there is no proper mechanism to check if these sites are utilised for dumping. The civic bodies have not removed any C&D waste from the forest area. Also, the task force was just an eyewash as the recommendation of the SIT was never followed,” Kamboj said.