NGT gives Rajasthan authorities last chance to comply with order on preventing discharge of untreated effluents

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Representative Image
Representative Image

New Delhi [India], June 12 (ANI): The National Green Tribunal has warned and given the Rajasthan Authorities the last opportunity for compliance with an order on the prevention of discharge of untreated sewage and industrial effluents on the agriculture lands at village Nokha in Bikaner district.

The tribunal, headed by chairperson, Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel, in an order passed on June 10, pulled up Rajasthan officials for non-compliance of order dated August 24, 2020.

"We give last opportunity for compliance, failing which, the Secretary of the concerned Departments i.e. Local Bodies, Urban Development, Local Self Department and the Member Secretary, State Pollution Control Board (PCB) will be held personally accountable, by way of coercive measures laid down under Section 25 and 26 of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010 (NGT Act), " the tribunal said.

The tribunal noted that Under Section 26 of the NGT Act, violation of the order of this Tribunal is a criminal offence, and is punishable with imprisonment up to three years, and a fine up to Rs. 10 crores.

Under Section 25 of the NGT Act, 2010, the order is executable at the decree of the Civil Court. Under Section 51 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, there is a provision for civil imprisonment or any other order; any other order can include stopping of salary of the erring officers.

The Tribunal has made it clear that it will accordingly take such coercive measures as found appropriate if the failure continued.

After taking note of failing in compliance with its earlier order, the Tribunal said, "Let the Member Secretary State PCB and concerned Secretary Local Self Govt. Rajasthan remain present in person by video conferencing with the compliance status on next date of hearing, September 21".

"In view of the binding judgment of the Supreme Court, the plea of budget cannot be taken to justify the continued violation of the Water Act and citizen's right to clean environment. In absence of any other source of funds, funds are to be raised from the citizens in the area as directed by the Supreme Court, and for failure, concerned erring officers are to be proceeded against," the tribunal said.

NGT had earlier had sought a factual and action report from the Rajasthan State Pollution Control Board with reference to the allegation of discharge of untreated sewage and industrial effluents on the agriculture lands at village Nokha of Bikaner district, Rajasthan. (ANI)

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