Down To Earth brings you the top environmental cases heard in the Supreme Court, the high courts and the National Green Tribunal
Shut down of dairies
The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on July 8, 2019 ordered the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) to shut down dairy units in Delhi for flouting environmental norms and creating health hazard.
The dairies have been allegedly dumping waste (solid, liquid and gaseous) into the drains which are meeting the river Yamuna, resulting in contamination of river water.
Besides, the clogged drainage has become breeding ground for mosquitoes and other inspects. Waste generated was also resulting in discharge of ammonia and nitrogen oxides in the air and nitrate in soil and ground water.
NGT has also ordered the DPCC to prosecute the polluters, recover compensation as well as furnish a report to the Tribunal before the next hearing.
Further, NGT has directed the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to study the matter and lay down appropriate guidelines for the management and monitoring of environmental norms by the dairies throughout India and furnish a report in the matter.
The local bodies in all the states or Union territories have been asked to file inventory of dairies in their respective jurisdiction so that state PCBs can compile such information in their respective reports furnished to CPCB.
Illegal banquet halls
The NGT on July 8 directed forfeiture of performance guarantee of Rs 5 crore deposited by the Delhi government, to the CPCB, as it failed to comply by the directions of the Tribunal on illegal restaurants, hotels,motels and banquet halls operating in Mahipalpur and Rajokri.
The compliance report filed by the Delhi government lacked in areas such as noise regulatory mechanism, compliance of Solid Waste Management Rules 2016, illegal withdrawal of groundwater, rainwater harvesting and policy for regulating the size of gathering, parking facilities, unauthorised constructions, among others.
“The policy for enforcement of environment norms for places in a densely populated city like Delhi where social gathering takes place, is necessary on account of there already being high level of air pollution,” NGT said.
“The policy making on such vital issue is expected to be in the light of expert studies based on air and water samples of the area, and with the involvement of experts in environment, urban planning or other relevant subjects," it added.
The Court has, meanwhile, accepted the request of the Delhi government for more time to take remedial action.
Deadline on health report extended
The NGT on July 10 has granted the Court Commissioner a month’s time to complete report regarding the health effects of air pollution caused by stone crushing units in Rajasthan's Koliya, Naka ke Dhani, Nozalo ke Dhani and Bandolai ke Dhani villages in Nagaur district.
The green court had in its May 15 order given direction for the appointment of a Court Commissioner, who will be a doctor having experience of pulmonary diseases and who would have a team of two or more doctors and visit the four villages and examine all the villagers.
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