NGT raps DJB for “shirking its responsibility” to control bad odour from Kondli STP

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New Delhi, Jul 12 (PTI) The National Green Tribunal Monday rapped the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) for “shirking its responsibility” to control the 'bad odour' emanating from a sewage treatment plant (STP) in Kondli here.

A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel noted that though it was earlier stated by DJB that odour control systems will be installed, no such steps have been taken. “We do not understand why DJB is now shirking its responsibility and taking a contra stand that small steps taken are enough and no odour control system is required. This stand is against public interest and noncompliance of order of this Tribunal,” the bench said and directed the DJB to pay cost of Rs five lakh per month from June 1, 2021 till compliance.

Merely dosing of Ferric Chloride, a covering and some plantation can hardly be held to be adequate steps in the matter, the tribunal said.

“It is clear that the DJB has failed to perform its obligation of preventing odour at the STP and only superficial steps have been taken to claim that odour has been controlled. “The problem has been persisting since long but plea of pandemic is being taken to justify inaction. Contrary to earlier commitment of installing an effective system, now it is stated that the odour has been controlled by spray etc. which is difficult to be expected,” the bench said.

“The CEO, DJB will be personally responsible for compliance. The CEO, DJB will be at liberty to take action against the erring officers in the matter. “The CEO, DJB may remain present in person through video conferencing, along with the compliance status on the next date. The amount of costs be deposited with the CPCB to be utilised for restoration of the environment,” the bench said.

The matter is listed further consideration on October 28, 2021.

The NGT had directed the DJB to take steps to control the 'bad odour' emanating from a sewage treatment plant (STP) in Kondli here and install an odour control unit.

It had warned that if the needful is not done by the stipulated date, the CEO of DJB will be liable to pay a cost of Rs five lakhs per month till compliance.

The NGT had earlier noted a report filed by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee and the DJB which said that laboratory analysis of the water samples collected at the outlet were not meeting the prescribed standards.

The tribunal was hearing a plea filed by a resident welfare society alleging that bad odour was coming from Kondli STP as it is not operated as per norms.

The plea alleged that the foul smell was causing breathing problems to the residents in the vicinity and was a health hazard. PTI PKS RKS RKS

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