Ngt: Ngt Rap For Hp Dept Secy For Non-compliance | Shimla News

Shimla: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has expressed its displeasure on the non-compliance of its order by the secretary, urban development, Himachal Pradesh. Such neglect on part of the authorities can hardly be appreciated and may call for coercive measures, including issuance of warrants for ensuring presence of the officer concerned, stated the tribunal.
On the issue of violation of provisions of the air and water pollution Acts in Dughneri village of Hamirpur district, the tribunal, in an earlier order, had directed the secretary, urban development, to oversee the follow-up remedial measures and file a compliance report. The secretary was also told to remain present in virtual mode. But when the matter came up for hearing on April 19, neither any report was submitted nor the secretary, urban development, was present.
The principal bench of the NGT headed by its chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel in the latest order stated that needless to say violation of orders of this tribunal was a criminal offence punishable under Section 26 of the NGT Act and was at par with the decree of civil court executable under Section 51 of the CPC inter alia by directing detention in custody. However, by way of indulgence, we grant one more opportunity for compliance, the bench stated.
Some local residents of Dughneri village had filed an application before the NGT against the violation of Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 and Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 in Dughneri.
They alleged that on account of failure to handle waste it was being burnt, causing air pollution, resulting in diseases, loss of livestock and contributing to forest fires and loss of wildlife.
The residents also alleged that there was an increase in the population of monkeys, feral dogs and scavengers namely crows, vultures, etc… The dumping site in the hilly terrain is overflowing and contaminating the water body, which is a source of irrigation, they added.
The matter has been considered on several occasions in the light of factual report furnished by the authorities concerned. In continuation of the earlier order, the matter was last considered on January 16 in the light of a report filed by the municipal council, Hamirpur, which showed that legacy waste was yet to be remediated, following which the tribunal had directed for follow-up remedial measures.
These measures were to be overseen by the secretary, urban development, Himachal Pradesh, and a compliance report of status as on February 28 had to be submitted by March 15. The matter was deferred for further consideration and the secretary was directed to remain present in virtual mode.
The tribunal in its order stated that apart from the above individual case, it was also monitoring compliance of solid and liquid waste management in the country in pursuance of the Supreme Court directions dated September 2, 2014.
Last consideration in respect of Himachal Pradesh took place vide order dated March 16 in the presence of the chief secretary, Himachal Pradesh, when the tribunal noted the gaps and directed remedial action.

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