Gurugram: Officials gear up to enforce environmental bansUpdated: Oct 25, 2019, 19:54 IST
Gurugram Following the implementation of the partial ban on construction, officials in Gurugram said that they will undertake night patrolling and are deploy more teams to keep a check on the ground situation. The ban was implemented by the Environmental Pollution Control Authority (Epca), on the recommendation of the Central Pollution Control Board’s (CPCB) task force.
Officials of the Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB) and the district administration said they will implement the recommendations, which also includes a complete closure of all coal-based industries until October 30.
These bans will also be implemented in Faridabad, Sonepat and Bahadurgarh, in addition to other NCR towns in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. With Diwali just around the corner, and air quality having deteriorated rapidly over the past two days in the entire NCR region, the CPCB task force has said that maintaining air quality over next few days “will be a challenge.”
The chairman of the Supreme Court-mandated Epca, Bhure Lal, also wrote to the chief secretary of Haryana on Friday, requesting strict compliance with the ban, which also prohibits the use of hot mix plants, stone crushers and earthmoving work, which could contribute to dust pollution.
“We have already started night patrolling with eight teams across the district to check violations. These teams will also be keeping vigilance on the construction ban,” said Kuldeep Singh, regional officer, Gurugram, HSPCB.
In addition, HSPCB officials said they will be serving notices to the town and country planning department, HSVP, police department and the MCG to enforce the ban.
Meanwhile, the police department on Thursday also issued an official communique, with details of twelve dedicated teams that will operate across the city to prevent polluting activities. “The main tasks assigned to the police department include streamlining vehicular movement, impounding visibly polluting vehicles or vehicles that do not comply with fuel standards, reducing traffic congestion at crowded intersections and ensuring no illegal parking on roads, leading to Vikas Sadan and IMT, where air quality monitors are placed. They will also be ramping up efforts against illegal parking,” said deputy commissioner Amit Khatri.
However, official orders issued between Thursday and Friday have no mention of the ban on diesel generators. The Epca has not yet pronounced a decision on Haryana’s request for relaxation of the ban in NCR towns, and the state government’s affidavit justifying their plea, which was to be prepared by October 24, has also not been submitted yet, on account of state assembly elections, officials privy to the matter said.
Sunita Narain, Epca member, said, “A decision will likely be taken early next week.”
Another official, requesting anonymity, said, “The matter has been delayed on account of elections. While Epca has agreed to hear the state’s concerns, the ban has not been repealed. Technically, it is still in force. A final decision will be taken after Diwali, once the state has submitted its affidavit explaining why the ban will have negative effects.”
HSPCB officials provided conflicting information about the ban. While regional officer for Gurugram, Kuldeep Singh, said “the ban is already in effect in the district” despite only ‘poor’ air quality levels, regional officer for Faridabad, JB Sharma, said that the ban is being implemented only when air quality deteriorates to ‘very poor’ and ‘severe.’. Epca chief Bhure Lal could not be reached for comment for clarification.