The National Green Tribunal today slammed Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam over establishment of sewage treatment plant (STP) on drains joining Ganga without conducting any survey. “You (Jal Nigam) have no respect for human health. You have wasted Rs 1500 crore since 1987 and you have not cleaned even a single drop of the river. What is you contribution to the Ganga cleaning? Have you carried out any survey before setting up of STP at Garh drain. When we ask questions you seek time for instructions,” a bench headed by NGT chief Justice Swatanter Kumar said.
When the counsel for UP Jal Nigam sought time to seek instructions, the green panel got irked and directed chief engineer of UP Jal Nigam along with the officers concerned to be present before it on next date of hearing.
“The Chief Engineer of Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam along with the officers concerned and the contractor who has prepared the Detailed Project Report for establishment of 3 MLD and 6 MLD STP at Garh drain should be present before the tribunal on February 13, 2017.
“They should show what survey was conducted, data prepared in support of DPR and consequently for the STP. We make it clear that in the event of default, the salary of Chief Engineer as well as that of the concerned officer shall remain attached,” the bench said.
Advocate General Vijay Bahadur Singh, appearing for UP government, told the green panel that he discussed the issue of tanneries with senior-most officials and came to the conclusion that there is no land available with the state government to shift them.
“There is not even an inch of land available with the government. The only feasible solution is to lay three different pipelines – one for chromium, second for domestic sewage and third for industrial waste – which would finally reach the common effluent treatment plant,” he said.
The bench had earlier observed that not a single drop of water of the Ganga has been cleaned so far and rapped the government agencies for “only wasting public money” in the name of the cleaning project.
The green panel has divided the work of cleaning the river in different segments.