The Common Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) that is managed by Ludhiana Effluent Treatment Society (LETS) and operated by a private company, JBR Technologies Pvt Ltd, has caused considerable environmental damage, according to a report of the Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB).
The report, which was prepared by a PPCB environmental engineer after a visit to the plant on May 23, has revealed that the CETP, which is situated at Phase 8 of Focal Point, has not applied for renewal consent to operate under the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974, despite it increasing its limit from 2 lakh litres per day to three lakh litres.
Earlier, a performance study was also carried out by the PPCB officials from March 24-27 that brought out startling results.
“The performance study concluded that the CETP is not being operated properly and efficiently,” stated the performance report.
It further stated that the approach of the plant’s operator was found to be “very casual” when a PPCB team concentrated on measurement of flow at the final outlet during a visit on March 25 and 26. “Various components of CETP were filled with sludge, which was taken out on the night of March 26, making volume in reaction tanks to increase,” report states.
After the report was submitted to PPCB chairman Ravinder Singh at Patiala, LETS officebearers were called for a personal hearing on April 7 in which upgrade of the CETP was sought by the PPCB officials.
Later, a team of PPCB again went for inspection on May 23 and found that the operator of CETP had “failed to complete the upgrade of the plant as per decisions of the hearing on April 7. The CETP operator was also not maintaining records of the chemicals being used for the treatment of effluents,” the report stated.
The most startling finding of the team was that from May 11 to 22 total effluent received was 3,128.58 kilolitres and the total treated water supplied to the industries after RO plant was 2,425.4 kilolitres. “There is a significant difference between the effluent received and effluent treated,” the report added.
Lets had earlier claimed that the of fice-bearers would deal with PPCB sternly if their visits and interference in the CETP did not stop.
Another hearing between the office-bearers and chairman of PPCB would take place at Patiala on June 17.
Charanjit Singh Vishwkarma, president of United Cycle and Parts Manufacturer Association ( UCPMA) and secretary of LETS, said a strategy on further course of action would be devised after the hearing at Patiala.