Gujarat HC forms task force to look into dumping of polluted water in Sabarmati river

  • | Thursday | 16th September, 2021

Ahmedabad, Sep 16 (PTI) Expressing shock at "horrifying picture" depicted in a report on dumping of sewage water mixed with industrial effluent into the Sabarmati river, the Gujarat High Court has constituted a joint task force to look into the matter, according to an order made available on Thursday.The task force will be headed by the regional director of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), it said."A cursory perusal of the entire report (after visit to some sites where polluted water was being dumped into the Sabarmati river) depicts a very horrifying picture, calling for some urgent steps in the right direction."We are informed that the water samples were also drawn from various places and the results of the same are shocking," a division bench of Justices JB Pardiwala and Vaibhavi Nanavati observed in its order passed on Tuesday. The court made the observations while hearing a suo motu PIL on media reports of polluted water being dumped into the Sabarmati river without being treated properly in accordance with established norms. The HC ordered the constitution of a joint task force headed by the regional director of CPCB, Prasoon Gargava, and said it will consider issuing further directions as sought by amicus curiae Hemang Shah, who had prepared the report with the help of an NGO and placed it on record.The amicus curiae has placed on record a very exhaustive report prepared after visiting five different sites where sewage water mixed with industrial effluent was discharged into the Sabarmati river, the bench said.Shah had undertaken the visit along with members of an NGO and officials of the GPCB (Gujarat Pollution Control Board) and CPCB on September 5.The joint task force will have as its members a representative of NGO Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti, experts, members of AMC (Ahmedbad Municipal Corporation) and GPCB and Torrent Power as well as a police officer, said the court. The HC directed the AMC to get details on volume and parameters stipulated by the National Green Tribunal for Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs), Common Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP/ETP) including the volume discharged within Ahmedabad district. It sought details on sanctions/permissions/authorizations granted by the city civic body to industrial associations, industrial set-ups, residential premises running industries or any such set-up to discharge waste water into the sewer lines. The court also took up the issue of a local cooperative, Miroli Piyat Sahakari Mandli Ltd, that was operating pump rooms to draw the sewage water and release it in gricultural fields for cultivation as claimed in the report, and impleaded it as a respondent. PTI KA RSY RSY

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