MPCB issues notice to PCMC for river pollution
Untreated effluents were found discharged into the Pawana river via three to four nullahs near the Ravet STP and Kejudevi Bandhara
After finding untreated domestic effluents being discharged into the Indrayani, Pawana and Mula rivers through various nullahs in gross violation of the provisions of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974, the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) on Tuesday issued notice to the environment department of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) for alleged pollution of the rivers in the twin city.
In the notice, MPCB officials informed that they visited the sewage treatment plants (STPs) of the PCMC at Ravet, Chikhali 1, Chikhali 2 and Ramdara nullah and collected samples of treated effluents from time to time. The PCMC has installed 16 STPs of 363 MLD capacity however only 300 MLD of sewage has been treated while the remaining 59 MLD of sewage is being discharged into the Mula, Pawana and Indrayani rivers.
An analysis of the samples collected by the MPCB revealed detergents in excess of limits in the Ramdara nullah water. Whereas untreated domestic effluents were found discharged from the Ravet STP through the PCMC drainage line. Untreated effluents were found discharged into the Pawana river via three to four nullahs near the Ravet STP and Kejudevi Bandhara. Officials said that the untreated domestic effluents settled down and caused eutrophication and growth of hyacinth. The MPCB alleged that the PCMC has commissioned STPs at Bhosari (7 MLD) and Jadhav Wadi (3 MLD) without obtaining consent to operate from the board. Furthermore, the civic body has not obtained consent to set up STPs at Kudalwadi.
According to the MPCB, sub-standard effluents were found discharged from Talwade, Chikhali, Kudalwadi and Moshi into the Indrayani river while untreated effluents were found discharged through the Ramdara nullah into the Indrayani river. MPCB officials said that the civic body has not obtained consent from the MPCB to increase water consumption and domestic effluent generation.
Ravindra Andhale, regional officer, MPCB, in the notice, said, “You are hereby given an opportunity to respond within 15 days with a corrective action plan along with short-term measures and long-term measures for the treatment of 100% domestic effluents generated in your jurisdictions. MPCB will initiate legal action against your unit without giving any further notice as per the provisions of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 and Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 in case of failure.” Andhale questioned as to why a prosecution proposal should not be filed against the PCMC and the people responsible for its day-to-day affairs under sections of the Water Prevention and Control of Pollution Act, 1974.
Sanjay Kulkarni, head of the environment department of the PCMC, said, that they will reply to the notice issued by the MPCB. “The MPCB claims 59 MLD of sewage is discharged into the river but that is not the fact. There are other local bodies through which these rivers pass and the river water gets polluted. The pollution board should also take action against them. In PCMC, we follow all the pollution control norms,” he said.