NGT pulls up government on zero result of Ganga cleaning

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New Delhi, Aug 19 (IANS) The National Green Tribunal on Friday pulled up the Uttar Pradesh and the central governments on pollution in the Ganga river, especially due to industrial discharge from the tanneries, saying that despite their tall claims “zero result” was delivered.

The NGT on July 26 sought action plan and clarity from the Uttar Pradesh government on industries involved in leather tanning in Kanpur, paper, textiles and slaughter houses about the steps taken to curb water pollution.

However, as the state failed to lay out a plan to clean the river’s stretch from Haridwar to Kanpur, part of the first phase of the Namami Ganga programme, the green court gave a “final opportunity” to the concerned authorities and the government to submit a report within two weeks.

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The tribunal warned of imposing a fine of Rs 25,000 in case of default.

“Every one comes here and tell us that they have done this and that but the result is zero. What are your plans? How are you going to protect it between Haridwar and Kanpur,” a bench headed by Chairperson and Justice Swatanter Kumar said.

The bench said despite repeated directions, nothing had happened.

The tribunal during its last hearing in July directed the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) to provide within 10 days the details of the budgetary expenditure of Rs 20,000 crore for cleaning and protecting the river.

It sought details on what the polluting industries in the state were doing for setting up an online monitoring system to check pollution of the Ganga.

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The tribunal also issued notices to the Jharkhand, Bihar and West Bengal governments, seeking their response on curbing river pollution in their jurisdictions.

After the Supreme Court assigned the case to the NGT, the latter divided the work of cleaning the river into different segments — stretching from Gomukh to Haridwar, Haridwar to Kanpur, Kanpur to Uttar Pradesh border, Uttar Pradesh border to Jharkhand border and Jharkhand border to the Bay of Bengal.



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