HYDERABAD: The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has issued notice to 228 electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) manufacturers across India, including four in Telangana and three in Andhra Pradesh, for not adhering to the E-waste (Management) Rules of 2016. The notices were sent to small companies as well as well-known corporations, including Datawind, Nokia, Cisco, Videocon, Karbonn, Usha Shriram, Benq, Panasonic AVC Networks, Fujitsu, Oppo, InFocus, Ajanta, AMD India, Maxx ,Celkon, Intel and Blackberry.
In Telangana five companies received the CPCB notice, including Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL), a Government of India enterprise, cellphone company Celkon Implex Pvt Ltd and three others, Smartron, Analogics and Bhagyashree Industries. The 228 EEE companies were sent notices for not applying to the CPCB through Form-I, for authorisation of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) as per E-waste Rules, 2016. In the notice CPCB gave all the rule violators a month’s time to get the required authorisation. Violation of E-waste Rules by well-known corporations is surprising as the rules are clear that any EEE company that operates without EPR authorisation from CPCB will be considered as causing damage to the environment. Further, the E-waste Rules state that a producer will be responsible for damage caused to environment due to improper management of e-waste.
The E-waste Rules, which came into effect on October 1, 2016, mandates EPR on electrical and electronic equipment manufacturing companies. As part of EPR, the EEE companies are responsible for setting up collection centres and mechanisms so that buyers of their products can discard the products safely once they reach end-of-life. This is to ensure that e-waste does not end up along with household waste in dumpyards and pollute environment with toxic heavy metals. It is also to ensure that the e-waste does not end up with unskilled dismantlers or recyclers whose health will be put at risk by exposure to the toxic elements in e-waste.
The guidelines issued by CPCB for E-waste Rules mandate that companies should apply to CPCB for EPR authorisation to ensure that the end-of-life electronic and electrical products are being channelised by the producers to authorized waste dismantlers/recyclers only who conduct the work in accordance with environmental laws.