Delhi

NGT warns of action against chiefs of pollution boards

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Green panel pulls up authorities for not curbing pollution in industrial clusters

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has pulled up authorities for not complying with directions to curb pollution in industrial clusters, and warned of action against senior officials of respective State Pollution Control Boards.

Taking note of a report furnished by the Central Pollution Control Board, the Bench said: “The status report does not refer to compliance of directions for enforcement of [relevant environmental norms] by prohibiting operation of polluting activities and assessing and recovering compensation on “polluter pays” principle, including interim compensation.”

While observing that inaction on the part of authorities is “at the cost of Rule of Law”, the Bench added that accountability for compliance of orders needs to be fixed. “On default, the Tribunal will have no option except to proceed against the chairmen and member secretaries of the State Pollution Control Boards and pollution control committees, by way of coercive action. Such action may include replacement of persons heading such PCBs/PCCs or directions for stopping their salaries till meaningful action for compliance of order of this tribunal,” the Bench said.

Consolidated report

The green panel has also directed the apex pollution control body to furnish a consolidated report on the action taken reports provided by all the States.

“The CPCB may also revise its mechanism for expansion and new activities by red and orange category of industries in critically or severely polluted areas consistent with the spirit of the earlier orders of this tribunal and principles of environmental law to bring down the pollution load and ensure that activities do not further add to such load,” the Bench said.

The directions came when the green panel was hearing a matter pertaining to remedial action to be taken for curbing pollution in already identified polluted industrial clusters.

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Printable version | Dec 13, 2019 9:13:29 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/ngt-warns-of-action-against-chiefs-of-pollution-boards/article29995371.ece

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