Board dissolved

Published: Saturday 31 March 2001

the Madhya Pradesh government has dissolved the state pollution control board after its chairperson V K Jain was arrested by the Lok Ayukta (la), an autonomous watchdog body. The la says that several documents in its possession reveal that Jain gave no objection certificates to several polluting industries, including distilleries, in violation of norms. The notification dissolving the board "in public interest" was issued on March 27, 2001, after getting a clearance from Digvijay Singh, the state chief minister.

Jain is one of the senior-most bureaucrats to be arrested while in office. "He is also one of the officials against whom the la has received the maximum number of complaints," says Faizanuddin, a judge of the la . "Documents reveal that Jain used the pollution control board as "a money-making machine". The state government had extended Jain's term in November 2000, despite grave allegations against him. Raids at his residence have yielded documents showing that he also "acted as a broker for his political masters". "Jain had certified that Union Carbide had left no toxic material at its plant site in Bhopal," alleges Faizanuddin.

Subscribe to Weekly Newsletter :

Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.