The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the joint committee of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Uttar Pradesh PCB and District Magistrate, Balrampur, with state PCB acting as nodal agency to ascertain the factual position and take remedial action in accordance with the law in a plea where it has been alleged that two sugar mills are discharging untreated industrial effluents into a storm water drain.
The plea mentioned that the effluents discharged in the drain are then released into the Suwaon drain, a rain-fed rivulet connected with the Rapti river, which forms part of the Ganga river basin, in Uttar Pradesh’s Balrampur district.
The plea was filed by Manav Sewa Sansthan, and advocate Rahul Choudhary, alleging two sugar mills — Balrampur Chini Mills Ltd. located in village Bishunpur village and Bajaj Hindusthan Sugar Mills located at tehsil Utraula.
The tribunal asked the respondents to file an action taken report within two months.
“The report may cover compliance of both the industries with reference to the consent conditions, particularly ZLD condition and consented mode disposal of effluents. Analytical results of samples collected by the applicant may also be adverted to,” the tribunal said.
“A copy of the report may also be shared with PPs for their response, if any, before the next date, by email. If there are any other orders with regard to the said mills by any other Court, the same be mentioned,” the tribunal added.
In the plea, the plaintiff has referred to an earlier order of the tribunal dated April 27, 2017 by which the tribunal considered an earlier grievance against Balrampur Chini Mills Ltd.
Finding violations, the tribunal directed remedial action, including payment of compensation as mentioned in the said order.
In the plea, the petitioner has annexed samples of waste water in the vicinity of the units showing exceedance of parameters.
It is stated that as per Environment Clearance (EC) condition, the unit has to be Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) and use effluents in its process, instead of discharging the same into the stream, as it is being done.
The petitioner has also annexed a copy of representation dated July 9, addressed to the statutory regulators on which CPCB asked the state pollution control board vide letter dated July 22 to look into the matter and take remedial action in respect of both the mills.
The NGT said: “The applicant may furnish set of papers to CPCB, state pollution control board, district magistrate, Balrampur and the PPs by e-mail and file affidavit of service within one week.”
The tribunal has listed the matter for further hearing on March 24, 2023.