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SC bans construction activity in 3 states, one UT over failure to frame waste management policy

The SC had been keeping a tab on solid waste management in the country ever since it took cognisance of the death of a boy in Delhi due to dengue.

india Updated: Sep 01, 2018 23:09 IST
Bhadra Sinha
Bhadra Sinha
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Supreme Court,ban on construction activity,Maharashtra
A Supreme Court bench led by justice MB Lokur also imposed a fine of Rs 3 lakh each on Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Uttarakhand, along with the Union Territory of Chandigarh, for the neglect. (REUTERS)

The Supreme Court has banned construction activities in three states – Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Uttarakhand, along with the Union Territory of Chandigarh after the respective governments failed to frame a policy on solid waste management, despite court directions. The order was issued after additional solicitor general AS Nadkarni, appearing on behalf of the Centre, informed the court about the lapse.

A bench led by justice MB Lokur also imposed a fine of Rs 3 lakh each on the states and the Union Territory for the neglect. “If they (governments) want the people to live in dirt, filth and garbage, what can be done then?,” Justice Lokur observed.

“In case, the states have the interest of the people, their cleanliness and sanitation in mind, then they should frame a policy for solid waste management. The attitude of the states/Union Territories, not yet framing a policy even after two years, is pathetic, to say the least,” the bench, comprising justices Deepak Gupta and SA Nazeer, said in its order.

“Further constructions in the states/Union Territories are stayed until the policy is framed,” the court said, listing the matter for further hearing on October 9.

As per the Solid waste management rules 2016, notified by the centre, states and Union territories were to prepare a state policy and solid waste management strategy.

The emphasis of the policy was to eliminate waste reduction and ensure optimum utilisation of various components of solid waste to ensure minimum discharge into landfill sites thereby reducing its impact on human health and environment.

The court also imposed a fine of Rs 5 lakh on Andhra Pradesh as it failed to file an affidavit in compliance of an earlier order on whether the policy was ready or not. Nadkarni too said the Centre has no information regarding Andhra Pradesh.

The court directed the fine to be deposited at the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee within two weeks. The amount would be utilised for juvenile justice issues, the court said.

The SC had been keeping a tab on solid waste management in the country ever since it took cognisance of the death of a boy in Delhi due to dengue.

First Published: Sep 01, 2018 23:09 IST