Govt agencies using waterbodies as garbage dumping pits: Tribunal

Govt agencies using waterbodies as garbage dumping pits: Tribunal

The National Green Tribunal, which is hearing the case related to the fire in Bellandur lake, on Wednesday, pulled up the Karnataka government, that government agencies were using waterbodies for dumping garbage, instead of protecting them.
 
“Drinking water to Bengaluru city is being brought from a distance of 150 km. Instead of reviving and preserving the number of available water bodies in and around the city, it is sad that the government agencies are using lakes as garbage dumping pits,” the bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said.

The tribunal, which heard the arguments over the lake fire case, said officials were more interested in making money by joining hands with polluters and builders, instead of protecting the environment.
 
Despite the NGT issuing a detailed direction on April 4, 2016, on steps to be taken to protect the lakes in and around Bengaluru, the government and urban local bodies totally ignored it.

“Except Pollution Control Board and Lake Development Authority, no other agency has followed our direction. The BBMP officials issued a circular, questioning the sanctity of the NGT direction,” the bench observed. 

Chemical effluents
Though one of the reasons given for fire incidents in the lake was letting out of chemical effluents in the water body, the government had not bothered to take action against those responsible.

The government has not set up a sewage treatment plant with advanced technology, the bench observed.

“Are you aware that pollution and fire incidents in the lake aggravated after you ignored our order?” the Bench asked the government officials. 

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