Legal eagles

Published: Friday 15 September 1995

M C Mehta: an eye for ecology< (Credit: Pradip Saha /CSE)Environmental squads to monitor and control pollution may soon make their appearance all over the country, as per a recent Supreme Court order. The squads will mainly play the role of watchdogs, keeping an eye on vehicular and industrial emissions. They will also be empowered to decide and act on matters involving ecological disasters.

The order was passed by Justice Kuldip Singh while responding to a petition filed by the lawyer-cum-environmentalist, M C Mehta, seeking the setting up of such bodies. The petition noted that industrial units located on the banks of the river Ganga have been spewing untreated effluents into the river and the efforts of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to contain it had remained unsuccessful. Environmental squads could, in this situation, help force the industries into abiding with the law and devising and executing anti-pollution measures.

The Centre has been given a month to set up these squads. The CPCB - based in New Delhi - and its branches in the various states will over-see the process of the creation the squads.

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