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NGT pulls up DJB for 'shirking its responsibility' to control bad odour from Kondli STP, fines Rs 5 lakh

ANI | Updated: Jul 12, 2021 20:06 IST

New Delhi [India], July 12 (ANI): The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has pulled up Delhi Jal Board (DJB) after noting that it has failed to control the "bad odour" emanating from a sewage treatment plant (STP) in Kondli area of Delhi.
Tribunal said that the DJB is held to be liable to pay a cost of Rs 5 lakh per month from June 1 till compliance.
"We do not understand why DJB is now shirking its responsibility and taking a contra stand that small steps taken are enough and no odour control system is required. This stand is against public interest and non-compliance of the order of this Tribunal," the bench noted.
The bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel in an order passed on July 9 stated, "It is clear that the DJB has failed to perform its obligation of preventing odour at the STP and only superficial steps have been taken to claim that odour has been controlled. The problem has been persisting for long but the plea of the pandemic is being taken to justify inaction Contrary to the earlier commitment of installing an effective system, now it is stated that the odour has been controlled by spray, etc. which is difficult to be expected."

"The CEO, DJB will be personally responsible for compliance. The CEO, DJB will be at liberty to take action against the erring officers in the matter. The CEO, DJB may remain present in person through video conferencing, along with the compliance status on the next date. The amount of costs to be deposited with the CPCB to be utilised for the restoration of the environment," the bench ordered.
Tribunal noted the stand of the DJB that odour control system of the latest technology will be installed at the present Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) in Kondli.
Tribunal stated, "We find that though it was earlier stated by DJB that odour control systems will be installed, in terms of the report of the DJB dated January 15, 2020, no such steps have been taken. Merely dosing of Ferric Chloride, Primary Thickener-A covering and some plantation can hardly be held to be adequate steps in the matter."
NGT direction and observation came during the hearing of an applicant moved by the Resident Welfare Association (RWA) submitted that inhabitants of the area are still forced to inhale hazardous gas on account of the failure of the DJB.

"There is no improvement. Mere spraying of chemical solution and other superficial steps are not effective in absence of installing an effective odour control unit," it submitted. (ANI)