Agencies fined ₹1 crore for flouting dust norms

The Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) on Tuesday issued fines to ongoing construction projects at Delhi Armed Police Line in Dwarka, India International Convention Centre in Dwarka, and multiple projects of the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), among others for not following dust-control measures and thus causing air pollution.

Fines worth a total of ₹1 crore were issued to 19 projects across the city following an inspection drive.

“We have issued fines to the Delhi Police, DDA, CPWD (Central Public Works Department) and other private builders for violation of dust control measures. We have issued fines to the agencies that took environmental clearance for these constructions,” a senior DPCC official told The Hindu.

“They will have to pay the fine and then send us a report on corrective measures taken. Later, we will also inspect some of them,” the official added.

The DPCC had carried out an inspection drive from February 15-28 and inspected 57 construction sites. “Of these, 18 project proponents were fined ₹5 lakh each and one has to pay a fine of ₹10 lakh,” the official said.

A set of guidelines on dust control, issued by the Central Pollution Control Board in November 2017, lists outs several measures, including use covering sheets [plastic, tarpaulin, etc] on construction material that can easily get airborne, and on construction and demolition debris.

“Enforcement of dust control measures in building and road construction will have to be strengthened. The government has to ensure compliance and accountability with strong deterrence,” said Anumita Roychowdhury, head of the ‘Clean Air’ programme at the Centre for Science and Environment, Delhi.

“In road construction, no one follows dust control norms. In building construction, big firms follow the measures, but the smaller ones do not,” said C.R. Babu, professor emeritus at Centre for Environmental Management of Degraded Ecosystems, Delhi University.

“Usually such inspection is done during summer, and when pollution peaks in winter. But this year, we have started early and plan to continue the drive,” the DPCC official said.

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Printable version | Aug 10, 2020 3:12:46 PM |

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