New Delhi, Jan 27 (PTI) The National Green Tribunal has rapped the Uttar Pradesh government for not preparing necessary policy of constructing eco-industrial parks with proper waste management facilities and buffer zones around the industrial areas, saying that pollution crimes adversely affect public health and are as serious as bodily injuries and need to be taken with same seriousness as law and order situation.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel took note of the report submitted by an oversight committee formed by it and said it shows disappointing state of affairs as the compliance has been very little and very slow. “The state pollution control board has failed to continuously monitor the progress which needs to be done. CETPs (Common Effluent Treatment Plants) has still not been constructed. 'Polluter Pays' principle is not being effectively applied,” the green panel said.
“The State has not prepared the necessary policy of constructing eco industrial parks with proper waste management facilities and buffer zones around the industrial areas,” the bench said.
The tribunal said the Master Plans need to be reviewed to prohibit industries in the industrial areas for effective compliance of mandate of the Constitution for providing pollution free environment to the inhabitants. “As repeatedly observed, pollution crimes adversely affect public health and are as serious as crimes of assaults or bodily injuries and need to be taken with same seriousness as law and order situation.
“Failure to enforce environmental norms is at par with creating lawlessness. These observations are being made with the hope that higher authorities in the State will realize their responsibility to the citizens and enhance higher level monitoring for effective enforcement of law,” the bench said.
The tribunal asked the authorities to further steps in the matter and directed the Chief Secretary, UP to monitor by appropriate mechanism at the level of the State.
The oversight committee headed by a former high court judge told the tribunal that the State Government may be directed to prepare a plan for construction of 'eco-industrial parks' in which the existing industries should have a symbiotic relations with each other i.e waste of one industry can be a raw material for another industry.
There should be proper waste treatment facilities in all the industrial areas. Industries Department should incorporate it in their Industrial Policy. “No new industrial areas be permitted without CETPs. Existing industrial areas should be given fixed timeframe to construct CETPs failing which they be shut down. UPSIDA be asked to make immediate provisions in their Industrial Areas. Suitable provisions be made in Industrial Policy for Private Industrial Parks,” the committee said.
The tribunal was hearing a plea filed by UP resident Gopeshwar Nath Chaturvedi relating to the matter of industries illegally operating in residential areas of Uttar Pradesh, more specifically the polluting units at Mathura city. PTI PKS RKS RKS