SrinagarNational Green Tribunal (NGT) has warned government of exemplary costs if it failed to take a decision by October 4 on setting up of a waste-to-energy power plant at Achan, the only garbage dumping site for this summer capital of the state.
In this matter the State of Jammu and Kashmir had taken numerous adjournments, in fact years, to finalise the tenders for establishment of waste to energy plant. We are informed that they are awaiting approval of the Cabinet, otherwise it has already been approved by all the agencies and instrumentalities in the State, said a bench of NGT headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar.
The NGT had proposed the setting of the plant to the SMC almost three years ago and its aim was to end the “crisis” of solid waste management in Srinagar and to create a mechanism for waste management at an affordable cost.
We make it clear that if the final decision is not taken by the State Government before the next date of hearing (October 4), it will be liable to pay exemplary cost for taking unjustifiable adjournment before us in a matter which is of great public importance, as it is the first Waste to Energy Plant to be established in the State of Jammu and Kashmir, the Bench said, underlining that plant is to be located in the city of Srinagar which is generating huge quantity of municipal and other wastes.
The wastes collected is not only the one generated in the city of Srinagar, but even from the surrounding areas and it is being dumped at a place which is causing serious environmental pollution, pollution to groundwater by leachates and water bodies like Dal Lake and its various segments.
It said the people of the city, particularly the residents of nearby villages have a right for decent environment which is being degrading continuously, affecting public health and adverse environmental impact because of inaction on the part of the State.
We are informed that nearly 450 MT of waste per day is being generated. To us it appears that this would convert the most beautiful city of our country into a waste dump deposit centre. We have been granting adjournment to the State of (J&K), considering that the State will take effective steps, but we are now realizing that for all this time the Tribunal had been passing various directions which still remain to be complied with and there is a need for expeditious action on the part of the State, the panel, also comprising Justice Raghuvendra S. Rathore (judicial member) and Dr. Nagin Nanda (expert member), added.
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