Residents of Crossings Republik heaved a sigh of relief after National Green Tribunal (NGT) cancelled multiple environmental clearances for an upcoming garbage dump cum solid-waste management plant (SWMP) in the nearby Dundahera village in Ghaziabad.
NGT’s orders came in response to a petition filed by Tarun Bharat Chauhan, president of CROMA, an association of residents, who lives in Buland Heights, a Crossings Republik society near the proposed site of the plant in Ghaziabad.
Residents had set forth the following demands in their petition:
a. To restrain concerned authorities from constructing municipal solid-waste plant at Dundahera.
b. To strike down/not to give any effect to orders/directions/notification/approval of the respondents decision to construct the plant.
c. To direct the respondents to build the plant at some other plot of land.
d. To cancel the NOC issued by Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board.
e. To direct the government through Ministry of Environment & Forests, and Ministry of Finance not to disburse any grant to the Municipal Corporation, Ghaziabad, for construction of the plant.
As a response to the appeal, the tribunal passed an order on December 16. It upheld four vital points for the welfare of the residents:
1. The environmental clearance granted to Nagar Nigam on April 24, 2013, is quashed and set aside.
2. By permanent prohibition, the Nagar Nigam is restrained from dumping municipal waste at the site.
3. The Nagar Nigam is ordered to remove all municipal waste dumped at the site within a period of six weeks.
4. The No-Objection Certificate issued on September 23 2009 granted by the Uttar Pradesh State Pollution Control Board, is quashed and set aside.
NGT came down heavily on the municipal corporation for infringing on rights of citizens residing in the area and not protecting the environment.
“Therefore, we have reached a conclusion that the MSW management plant cannot be established on the site concerned as per the rules and manual; it is not suitable at all for the said purpose and keeping in view the fact that lakhs of people are residing in the buildings that have been raised on the land meant for residential use and the layout plans of which have been duly approved by GDA,” stated NGT.
“We had been fighting to stop the plant from coming up since the past three years,” said Chauhan. “What I did, I did with the interest of homebuyers in mind. It would have been a crying shame if they would have had to live in unhygienic conditions after having invested their savings in their dream homes,” Chauhan added.