THE UTTAR Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) has decided to move the Supreme Court against Lucknow Jal Nigam for its failure to manage city’s only sewage treatment plant at Daulatganj.
“We are shocked to learn that out of 400 million litres per day (mld) of sewage water reaching the treatment plant at Daulatganj, only 42 mld of water is being treated by the Lucknow Jal Nigam at the plant. The rest is finding its way into the river,” chairman of UPPCB R S Chauhan told Hindustan Times.
He said the Sunday incident, in which a large number of fish died in the Gomti, was the outcome of the river’s dissolved oxygen levels (DOL) falling below the minimum 5.9 milligrams per litre a day.
The monthly analysis report prepared by the UPPCB to monitor the DOL between September 1 to 15 indicated that the levels fell from the safer levels of 6.1 milligrams per litre a day to 5.9 on Saturday. Later, it fell to the dangerous level of 4.9 on Sunday, Chauhan said.
Immediately after the opening of the gate of the Gomti barrage, the DOLs returned to the safe level of 6.7 milligrams per litre a day late on Sunday night but not before causing extensive damage to the aquatic life in the river, he said.
“If the gate at the Gomti barrage was not opened on Sunday night, the dangerously high level of sewage water in the river could have destroyed even more aquatic life within hours besides raising serious public health safety concerns,” he said. Chauhan said the sewage treatment plant at Daulatganj was installed by the Central government and the Lucknow Jal Nigam was entrusted with the responsibility of managing the plant in the city.
“During the past two-and-a-half years, the UPPCB had served several notices to the Jal Nigam for establishing new sewage treatment plants in the city. “The only option left with the UPPCB is to take the matter to the Supreme Court as notices served by the Board have had no impact on the Nigam authorities,” he said.
Chauhan said the UPPCB had already directed its officials to collect the water samples from the sewage treatment plant at Daulatganj for further action. “I have already issued instructions to get the water samples of Ganga and other rivers also collected for analysis so that action could be taken against other authorities as well for showing negligence in proper treatment of water in other sewage plants across the state,” he added.