DPCC sends closure notice to 21 farm houses for flouting green norms
The Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) has slapped fines and sent closure notices to at least 21 farmhouses with banquet facilities for allegedly flouting green norms and triggering pollution.
“At least 21 farmhouses were sent closure notices and penalties ranging from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 10 lakh were imposed on them for violating environment norms. In order to operate, they would have to pay the environment compensation and take permission from DPCC,” said Arun Mishra, member secretary of the board.
These farmhouses equipped with banquet halls, motels, swimming pools were located mostly in Rajokri and Mahipalpur areas along National Highway-8.
Even though there are around 350 such farmhouses in Delhi, the ones along NH-8 and Jaipur Highway had recently come under the scanner of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) and DPCC after a PIL was filed in court, alleging that they were triggering pollution.
“Most of these farmhouses were hosting marriage functions and other parties in which loudspeakers and firecrackers were used. These along with diesel generators were triggering heavy air and sound pollution whenever a party was held,” said a senior DPCC official.
Some were even found to install illegal bore wells to extract ground water to fill up their swimming pools. Some even didn’t have the mandatory ‘Consent to Operate’ and ‘Consent to Establish’ certificates of DPCC.
“The farmhouses have been asked to install effluent treatment plants or repair the plant where it is existing but non-functional so that whatever effluent is generated could be treated on the spot. They have been asked to maintain required stack heights for their DG sets. Bore wells if any would have to be sealed,” said the environment department official.
Earlier this month, NGT had directed the forfeiture of performance guarantee of Rs 5 crore deposited by the Delhi government. The green court had expressed its dissatisfaction with the compliance report on illegal banquet halls, farmhouses and hotels in Delhi.