NGT orders Puri municipality to remove waste

The wastes were dumped at Baliapanda, around 100 metres from the sea beach
National Green Tribunal. Image used for representational purpose
National Green Tribunal. Image used for representational purpose

CUTTACK: National Green Tribunal (NGT)’s East Zone Bench in Kolkata has directed Puri municipality to remove the legacy wastes at the Baliapanda area within two years. Sources said the site, situated around 100 metres away from the sea beach in Puri, has been lying dumped with waste since the past three decades. The wastes were dumped at the site between 1984 and 2019.

The bench of Justice B Amit Sthalekar and Dr Afroz Ahmad directed the Puri municipality to also install CCTV cameras within three months covering the entire dumping site to check unauthorised entry of vagrants and others into the area. “If such persons are found roaming near the dumping site or igniting a fire, criminal action shall be immediately taken against them,” the order specified.

The bench further directed Puri municipality to ensure the construction of a boundary wall around the dumping site to secure the area and prevent the spillover of legacy wastes in the surrounding region. The municipality was further asked to take immediate steps to ensure the complete eradication of foul smell on a day-to-day basis through spraying and other methodologies.

The directions were issued on July 12 after the bench received a petition from one Chinmaya Das, a resident of Puri. A final copy of the directives was available on Thursday. The petition stated that the burning of the waste completely polluted the nearby areas of Balisahi, Gourbat Sahi and Swargadwar.

The bench observed, “Though steps are being taken by the Puri Municipality towards the protection of the environment and treatment of waste at the dumping site, matters relating to unauthorised colonies close to the dumping site need to be addressed. A direction is therefore issued to Puri municipality to take steps for shifting the said unauthorised colonies from the vicinity to some other place in accordance with the law.”

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