Waste dumping sites produce harmful gases and when put on fire, it becomes the worst for public health and the environment, the National Green Tribunal has said.
A bench headed by NGT chairperson Swatanter Kumar made the observation while forming a committee headed by the secretary of Delhi government’s Urban Development department to inspect and file a report on indiscriminate burning of waste in dumping sites at Ghazipur and Bhalswa areas.
“Needless to note that these dumping sites, even without being put on fire, generate gases which are injurious to the environment and public health. Once they are put on fire, intentionally or otherwise, to reduce the quantum of dumped waste at site, certainly becomes worst, both for human health and environment,” the tribunal said.
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It noted that the emission of gases visibly were highly polluting and dangerous to human health.
The bench asked the panel to submit a report by Monday after taking note of various photographs showing dumps of waste “which are already much beyond the prescribed limit and are on fire”.
“We therefore constitute a Committee consisting of Member Secretary, Central Pollution Control Board, Member Secretary, Delhi Pollution Control Committee and Chief Engineers of the respective Municipal Corporations,” it said.
The tribunal said the report should be specific and comprehensive and the panel should collect air and gas samples which would be analysed in relation to all its possible constituents.
The NGT also asked the panel to report why its earlier directions were not complied with.
In its order, the tribunal said that “if any step had been taken in that direction, the corporation and NCT, Delhi would be at liberty to bring it to the notice of the Committee.”
“If no such submission is made before the Committee, it shall be presumed that no step whatsoever have been taken in furtherance to those judgments. If steps taken are brought to the notice of the Committee, it shall verify the same upon physical inspection of the site. Inspection should be completed continuously, if necessary tomorrow or day after,” it said.
The NGT also appointed advocate Rahul Khurana as an observer who shall also be a member of the committee and listed the matter for further hearing on March 9.