Special squads in Delhi will check waste burning in Narela, Bawana
Narela and Bawana are among the 15 pollution hotspots in Delhi identified by CPCB last week. Pollution from these industrial areas spread to other areas, worsening the overall air quality of Delhi.
Government agencies have been asked to form special squads to control air pollution in industrial zones of Bawana and Narela, where air quality has remained consistently bad because of unbridled open dumping and burning of industrial waste.
The Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) has directed the North Delhi Municipal Corporation, Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and the Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC) to form these special squads, after a team comprising DPCC and Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) officials visited the spots and found rampant violations.
“These special squads would be deployed to check open dumping and burning of waste in vacant plots and open areas surrounding the industrial areas of Narela and Bawana. These teams would check the release of untreated industrial waste water into the drains, which ultimately trigger water pollution,” said a senior official of DPCC.
Narela and Bawana are among the 15 pollution hotspots in Delhi identified by CPCB last week. HT had reported (On October 7) that NASA satellites had detected large-scale open burning of waste in these areas. Pollution from these industrial areas spread to other areas, worsening the overall air quality of Delhi.
The DPCC has directed DDA and the north civic body to shut down illegal industries operating outside the industrial zones. The municipal agency has been asked to ensure collection, segregation and proper disposal of waste according to the solid waste and plastic waste management rules of 2016.
A team of CPCB and DPCC had visited the industrial zones in November and found there was no mechanism to collect the waste generated by households and industries. Pvc-insulated cable wires, construction waste and rubber and plastic waste were being dumped in vacant plots and open areas. They were frequently set on fire to dispose them of and create space for new waste to be dumped.
“We have already started removing the waste. The process, which needs to be followed before illegal industries are closed down, has been initiated. The illegal industrial units have been identified and would be closed down soon,” said a senior official of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation.
Over the past two months at least, Bhure Lal, chairman of the Supreme Court appointed body Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA), has been making rounds of industrial areas and taking stock of the situation. EPCA had even asked the Delhi environment department to start night patrolling in the areas.
“Situations have improved over the past two months. At least 45,000 tonnes of waste, comprising mainly rubber and plastic, has been removed. At least 30,000 tons of waste has been sent to a waste to energy plant. The rest have gone to Bhalswa landfill site,” said Lal.