The Bombay High Court has ordered closure of a drug manufacturing factory in Raigad district following a petition that said the factory has severely polluted three surrounding villages.
Residents of Munavali, Sogaon and Choronde villages had been complaining against Pradeep Shetya Pvt Ltd since it was established 30 years ago. The Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (mpcb) issued closure notices to the unit 14 times, but each time the management managed to open it, said Roshan Sane, who filed the petition in 2008.
Unchecked release of effluents from the unit has ruined farmlands. Paddy yield has reduced to one-fifth, said Sane. Deputy Sarpanch of Choronde, Ashok Naik, said his land got covered with a yellow-coloured substance in 1992. Since treating the soil was expensive, he sold off the land. Wastes from the factory have also poisoned the groundwater, Sane said; the residents are now dependent on tap water. Choronde residents also complained of breathing problems. In an affidavit to the court, Yashwant More, a former employee of Pradeep Shetya, said the factory makes banned chemicals—diamenazene diaceturate, meglumine and nitroxyhil. More was forced to resign after he asked for safety measures and medical services for workers. Factory owner Pradeep Shetya said he would restart the unit after introducing the changes suggested by mpcb.
We are a voice to you; you have been a support to us. Together we build journalism that is independent, credible and fearless. You can further help us by making a donation. This will mean a lot for our ability to bring you news, perspectives and analysis from the ground so that we can make change together.