NGT scraps Eastern UP Rivers & Water Reservoirs Monitoring CommitteeUpdated: Sep 30, 2019 21:29 IST
After the scrapping of the UP Solid Waste Management Monitoring Committee on July 15, this year, now, the Eastern UP Rivers and Water Reservoirs Monitoring Committee has also been disbanded through an order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) dated September 11, 2019.
The monitoring committee’s last meeting was convened at the environment directorate on Monday.
DP Singh, chairman of the committee, said, “The charge shall be handed over by the secretary of the committee, Rajendra Singh, to the representative of the department of urban development before October 10.”
It may be noted that the UP Solid Waste Management Monitoring Committee and the Eastern UP Rivers and Water Reservoirs Monitoring Committee -- both set up by the NGT -- had caused a stir by recommending strong punitive action, including heavy fines, against industries polluting land and rivers.
Not only that -- these committee had slapped crores of fines on municipal corporations as well as the UP Pollution Control Board too.
Officials, on condition of anonymity, said that the committees’ actions had irked higher officials of the state government and hinted that there may have been pressure on the NGT to scrap them. They said the committees had exposed several industries that were throwing harmful effluents directly into rivers in cities like Gorakhpur, Lucknow and Ghaziabad.
“Just last month, a factory in Lucknow had to be closed after it allegedly released effluent into a nearby drain that is believed to have caused the death of around 25 buffaloes. The committees had all such polluting units on their radar,” said an official.
Meanwhile, at the last meeting of the Eastern UP Rivers and Water Reservoirs Monitoring Committee, Justice DP Singh said, “The department of urban development would be desired to maintain the websites of the two monitoring committees, bearing passwords and providing an appropriate forum for receiving complaints from citizens all over the state regarding municipal solid wastes, biomedical waste, plastic wastes and C&D wastes as well as pollution of rivers and other water bodies in the manner done by the present committee since a year and take follow-up action accordingly.”
“At the same time, the department of urban development, would be desired not to delete the reports forwarded to the NGT by the two monitoring committees,” he added.