NGT directs formation of committee to clear garbage from Shakti Khand
On the matter of “unscientific” dumping of municipal solid waste at a dumping site in Indirapuram, the National Green Tribunal has directed formation of a five-member committee that would prepare an action plan to clear garbage-dumps from the site. The court has also directed the committee to submit the progress report of the action plan in the court before the next date of hearing which will be held on Nov 19, 2019.
As per the order, the committee would be headed by DM Ghaziabad while Vice Chairperson of Ghaziabad Development Authority, Commissioner of Ghaziabad Municipal Corporation, one representative from Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board and another representative from Central Pollution Control Board will be its members.
Besides, the green court also directed DM Ghaziabad to resolve the dispute between GMC and GDA regarding deposit of Rs. 25 lakhs for damage to the environment and performance guarantee of Rs 25 lakh as it found that the authority did not take steps in compliance with Municipal Solid Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2016. The court has given DM Ghaziabad three weeks of time to resolve this matter.
The green court gave these orders on Thursday during a hearing petition filed by confederation of trans-Hindon residents’ welfare associations (RWA). The confederation had filed the petition in 2017 after several fire incidents took place at the site. The petition contended that dumping and burning of solid waste at the site was leading to hazardous environmental effects, while highlighting the alleged failure of the administration to take effective steps.
In its last order on May 2019, the NGT remarked that the GMC was illegally dumping garbage in Shakti Khand area of Indirapuram and directed the authority to pay compensation and the performance guarantee. However, GMC contested the direction and in its reply told the court that both the fines should be collected from GDA as it looks after the Indirapuram area.
Commenting on the matter, Kuldeep Saxena, a member of the confederation said that the dumpyard should be removed as it has made difficult for the residents to live in the area. “Not just it’s a sore sight, the bad odour and poisonous fumes emanating from fire incidents from the dumpyard are serious health hazard for the residents living in the area.” “It should be shifted from our surrounding as early as possible,” Saxena added.
The UPPCB also recommended for shifting of the dump site as it can lead to contamination of water. In its observation filed in the green court, UPPCB had observed that “further dumping of solid waste at the site will generate leachate which will perlocate to ground water and would further contaminate the ground water”.
Speaking on the matter, GDA-VC said that the dumpyard would be shifted soon. In December 2018, the GDA had decided to shift the dumping ground from Shakti Khand to a waste to energy site at Galand. The GDA has identified about five acres of land where the solid waste from Indirapuram locality will be transferred. The transfer was supposed to happen in February. GDA had even acquired 18 acres out of total 35 acres land at the site, but the hurdles in further acquisiton delayed the plan. “Now we have acquired the total land and also given Rs 16.5 crores to GMC to further pay to the farmers whose lands we acquired,” added Kanchan verma, VC-GDA.