Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Pollution along rail tracks needs to be attended with utmost sincerity: NGT

New Delhi: Anguished over the failure of a committee to even suggest measures for tackling the problem of human excreta and waste dumping along railway tracks, the National Green Tribunal on Monday expressed dissatisfaction saying such serious issue needs to be attended with utmost sincerity.

A bench, headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar, directed the Chairman of the Railway Board to conduct a meeting of the all the experts in the committee and comply with orders of the Tribunal without delay and default.
"The intent of the previous order was clear that the committee should consider the ways and means to tackle the problem of human evacuation and waste dumping along the tracks by the population particularly the lower strata of the society.
"We are pained to observe that the committee has failed to even suggest measures that may be required to be taken by the common person much less by a technical expert body like the committee constituted by our order. We are oblivious .....To such serious environmental issue that needs to be attended by the authority concerned with utmost sincerity, urgency and objectivity," the bench said.
The Tribunal also said the committee shall consider positively all steps that are required to be taken to resolve this menace and serious environmental issue.
The Tribunal had on September 15 constituted a special committee to suggest measures to control and prevent the menace of environmental hazards resulting from plastic and other waste being thrown apart from human excreta.
The Tribunal was hearing a petition filed by lawyers Saloni Singh and Arush Pathania seeking a blanket ban on use and sale of plastic products on railway platforms across the country besides a ban on open defecation by people around tracks.
The petitioners had alleged the activity of dumping plastic waste and discharging human waste on tracks was adversely affecting the ecosystem.
The petitioners had also sought appointment of a committee consisting of eminent environmental activists, experts and lawyers to study the impact of such activities.


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