No action yet against MCG, Ecogreen for flouting waste norms
On April 29, the HSPCB issued new modalities with the sanction of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), enabling district regional offices to penalise polluters. However, Singh said that the MCG and Ecogreen Energy will not, for the time being, be fined under these new rules.Updated: May 02, 2019, 05:04 IST
Two months after the Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB) recommended legal action against the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) for unscientific dumping of waste in Bandhwari, no case has been lodged against the civic body or its waste management concessionaire Ecogreen Energy. HSPCB officials said the issue was “in process”, but did not specify why it has been held up.
On March 1, the state pollution control board wrote to the senior environmental engineer at the HSPCB headquarters in Panchkula, recommending prosecution of the MCG commissioner and Ecogreen Energy, under Section 15 of the Environmental Protection Act (1986) for non-compliance of Solid Waste Management Rules and Hazardous Waste Management Rules, as well as violating the Environmental Impact Assessment Notification of 2006.
The order also calls for closure of the Bandhwari landfill site, under sections 33-A, 43 and 44 of the Water Act (1974), sections 31-A, 38 and 39 of the Air Act (1981) and for operating without the HSPCB’s consent.
Kuldeep Singh, HSPCB’s regional officer, Gurugram, said, “We are still looking into the issue. It will take some time, but is being processed.” Singh did not provide any further detail.
Responding to the recommendations, municipal commissioner Yashpal Yadav said that they were “vague” and “do not spell out the deficiencies (on part of the MCG) or even the exact time period of the violations”. He said that the HSPCB should give the parties concerned “some sort of opportunity” to address violations before taking a call, as had been done by the regional officer.
Singh said that the MCG and Ecogreen have been previously served with show-cause notices on continued polluting activities at Bandhwari and that their replies to the same were unsatisfactory. “Hence, prosecution was recommended. We were also informed by the advocate general for Haryana in the National Green Tribunal that we are to take action against the defaulters, under whatever appropriate laws are in force,” he added.
On April 29, the HSPCB issued new modalities with the sanction of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), enabling district regional offices to penalise polluters. However, Singh said that the MCG and Ecogreen Energy will not, for the time being, be fined under these new rules.
“The NGT has already asked the CPCB to assess the damage and levy penalties. Since they are involved, the state board will let them take the decision as directed by the tribunal,” Singh said.
Officials from Ecogreen Energy, including CEO Gaurav Joshi, did not respond to multiple requests for comment.