A new committee on Yamuna will review its own work
the Supreme Court on December 12, 2005, appointed yet another committee to look into controlling the pollution of the river Yamuna in Delhi (see box: Committes flow). The 'apex committee' (ac) to be created would review the clean-up plan proposed in August 2005 by a previous committee headed, in personal capacity, by Anil Baijal, secretary to the Union ministry of urban development. He will also chair the ac, which is likely to include Ranjit Kumar, Amicus Curiae, and Sunita Narain, director of Centre for Science and Environment, New Delhi. The question is: can a committee review a proposal made earlier by its chair?
The bench comprising chief justice Y K Sabharwal and justice C K Thakker, also ordered the Municipal Corporation of Delhi's commissioner and Delhi Jal Board chief executive officer to appear in person for the next hearing, as they failed to report the progress of the clean-up programme.
The previous Baijal committee suggested the adoption of the Thames model (see 'Get real Mr Baijal', Down To Earth, October 15, 2005). "We have neither the money nor the time. We need to adopt solution-appropriate scales and hybrid technologies for sewage treatment through recycle and reuse," says Syam Asolekar, professor, Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai. Several experts demand an independent evaluation of Baijal's proposal.
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