Daily Court Digest: Major environment orders (August 27, 2020)

Down To Earth brings you the top environmental cases heard in the Supreme Court, the high courts and the National Green Tribunal

By DTE Staff
Published: Thursday 27 August 2020

Uniform compensation 

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) directed a unit engaged in manufacturing of printing press machines and their spare parts, to pay 25 per cent of the Rs 20 lakh required to be paid as environmental compensation (EC), as imposed by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC).

The unit will also have to give an undertaking not to start prohibited activity in non-conforming areas and not to repeat any polluting activity. The scale of compensation would then be revisited by a joint committee comprising the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) and the DPCC within three months.

The NGT order of August 25, 2020, was in pursuance to an application filed by the unit before the NGT. It was against the order passed by the DPCC on July 17, imposing an EC of Rs 20 lakh on the basis of the ‘Polluter Pays’ principle.

The unit was engaged in making printing press machines and their spare parts, an activity that falls under the ‘Orange’ category in a non-conforming area. The DPCC had ordered that Rs 20 lakh would have to be given as EC by every unit operating in the ‘Orange’ category in non-conforming areas.

This was disputed by the unit, that said a uniform compensation for every ‘Orange’ category unit operating in non-conforming areas would result in discrimination against smaller units, without reference to their contribution to pollution. 

Mayapuri dhalao

The South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) assured the NGT that the waste centre (dhalao) at Mayapuri Industrial Area Phase-II would be properly maintained on a regular basis.

Also, M/s EESL would provide appropriate machinery equipments and sufficient staff at the site to remove the municipal solid waste collected / dumped frequently as well as keep the dhalao neat and clean and maintain hygeine at the site.

This was stated in the action-taken report of the SDMC. The report said the dhalao was a prominent one, where huge quantities of garbage — approximately 6-7 metric tonnes (MT) per day — was dumped.

If the dhalao was closed, the sanitary condition of the area would be badly affected. There was also no other dhalao nearby, at which the garbage dumped at this dhalao could be diverted. Therefore, this dhalao should not be closed or shifted.

Sand mining

A committee comprising of the district collector of Sehore and the Madhya Pradesh State Pollution Control Board (MPPCB) was entrusted by the NGT on August 26 to look into the matter of illegal sand mining.

An application was filed before the NGT by SAHAS (Mahila Sikshan Evam Samajik Vikas Sanstha) against illegal mining and request for direction to the Madhya Pradesh State Mining Corporation to ensure 'scientific replenishment study' as prescribed in sand guidelines issued by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.

Bhopal Chota Talab 

The bench of Justice Sheo Kumar Singh of the NGT on August 25 directed a joint committee consisting of the Collector, Bhopal, the Municipal Corporation, Bhopal and the Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board to submit a factual and action-taken report on pollution of Chota Talab in Bhopal.

It was alleged that the lake water was getting polluted as a result of mud balls filled with hazardous chemicals being thrown in to kill fish and sell them.

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