Noida Sector 143 green belts turn to sewage ponds in absence of pipelines
Struggling to get a sewer connection from the Noida Authority despite being given an occupancy certificate four years back, the residents of Gulshan Ikebana, residential society in Sector 143, have said that the society is force to discharge excessive effluents to the green belts in the area, in absence of sewer lines.
“The society has over 1,000 families living here. Though there is a sewage treatment plant (STP) installed, a large quantity of sewage or wastewater has to be discharged, which ideally should go through permanent sewer lines as per the master plan, but the society is forced to discharge them in open areas as there are no sewers,” said Narendra Chandel, a resident of Gulshan Ikebana society. A complaint in the matter has also been sent to the Nation Green Tribunal, he added.
Residents claimed that with the waste water filling up the nearby greenbelts, some of which share boundaries with the society, residents face health hazards such as mosquito menace. They added that a total of 23 cases of dengue from the society were reported this season alone.
“The discharge is causing loss of greenery, stinking up the area as well as giving rise insect infestation from sewer ponds, which have been created as a result of the discharge. When one green belt is filled to its gut with the sewage, the society starts diverting sewage to another belt. Five such green belts, which have hundreds of trees, have now been compromised through various other societies in the area. All the authorities have to do it to connect drains with the sewer line, but this has not been done so far,” added Chandel.
During a spot visit by HT, it was revealed that at least four large green belts in the Sector 143 area have been converted into stinking sewer ponds, killing scores of trees in the area.
Meanwhile, the authority, accepting that the drains coming out of residential societies are yet to be connected with the dedicated sewer-line situated about two kilometres from the society, said that a plan is underway to resolve the issue soon.
“There is an issue of sewer line and it will be resolved soon. Officials from the concerned department have visited the high-rises on Monday to inspect. The work-circle has been directed by the waste & sewage, and the health department of the Noida authority to do so and soon all drains will be connected with the permanent sewer lines,” said Avinash Tripathi, officer on special duty, health, Noida Authority.
According to residents, they have been getting assurances from the authority since September 2015 when they first approached them but to avail, to which officials said that a sewer line will soon be put in place in the area.
Officials, however, added that high-rises are supposed to treat and reuse their sewage water, and only excessive waste should be discharged and fed to sewer lines for further treatment by the authority’s STPs. They said however the norms ask each high-rise to ensure that their STPs are working in full capacity and the wastewater is reused for horticulture purposes, and only the excessive wastewater is released in the drains.
According to the Noida authority officials the high-rise was recently fined for discharging the excessive water and overflowing drains. “Last week, we found that the society’s STPs were not working to full capacity and some untreated sewage was also being discharged, so a fine was imposed. All such high-rises are supposed to treat their sewage completely and leak only the excessive waste water that is sent to drains,” said R K Sharma, manager, public health, Noida authority.
“Authority imposed a fine of Rs one lakh last month because excessive water was overflowing from the drain. My question is, where is it supposed to go when there are no sewers? We have been treating and reusing wastewater, but even as that happens some excessive sewage has to be discharged. Last Monday, officials from authority came, gave us assurances and left, and nothing had happened since then. The drain of another society is overflowing and water is spreading on the road, yet they did not even bother to send a team to cater that,” said Suresh Bisht, another resident of Gulshan Ikebana.
Vivek Nigam, the estate manager of the society, refused to comment on the matter, despite repeated attempts by HT.
According to environmentalists, the green-belt must have been compromised already, being partially submerged under waste water for so long. “Those trees are dead because those species are not suitable for marshes. But the impact doesn’t stop here, the ground water of the entire region, around Sector 143 to Sector 150, is being contaminated,” said Noida based environmentalist Vikrant Tongad.