Rs 5000 fine on those dumping waste on Yamuna floodplains
The National Green Tribunal has banned open defecation and dumping of waste on the floodplains of the Yamuna river in Delhi. Along with this, the tribunal has also ordered a compensation of Rs 5,000 on those found violating the order. Additionally, a committee headed by the CEO of the Delhi Jal Board has been constituted to keep a check on the execution of work pertaining to the ‘Maili se Nirmal Yamuna Revitalisation Project 2017'. The NGT has also directed the authorities to take immediate action against industries that operate in residential areas and are a major source of pollution of the river.
Environmentalists oppose interlinking of rivers
While the government pins hope on the interlinking of rivers to resolve the water crisis in the country, the environmentalists are critical of the project. Last week, environmentalists stood in opposition to the Ken-Betwa river link that has been accorded clearance by the forest advisory committee but without any of the changes sought by the former. The activists want the government to implement alternative methods to tackle the water crisis instead of interlinking as it will have huge environmental impacts along with rehabilitation issues and increased conflicts between riparian states.
Pollution control board shuts down 76 industries polluting Bellandur lake
Following the order of the National Green Tribunal, the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has shut down 76 industries for polluting the Bellandur lake in Bengaluru that has been catching fire often due to pollution. Along with this, nearly 157 apartments in the vicinity of the lake have been directed to install sewage treatment plants to prevent discharge of sewage into it. The board has further ordered the Bengaluru Electricity Supply Company Ltd (Bescom) to disconnect power in case of violation.
Telangana government in a hurry to complete pending irrigation projects
In the wake of the new land acquisition law coming into effect soon, the Telangana government is all set to acquire one lakh acres of land to complete all the pending irrigation projects in the state. Last year, due to the high court orders, several irrigation projects were put on hold which resulted in a loss of over Rs 400 crore to the state in the form of price escalation. However, now the officials have been instructed to speed up the acquisition works as soon as the law comes into place. Approvals have been given for increasing the number of posts in irrigation department for speedy land acquisitions.
HC seeks status report of Kollidam barrage in Tamil Nadu
The high court has ordered the state to submit a status report on the construction of a check dam on the Kollidam river. The project which was conceived in the 1990s between Nagapattinam and Cuddalore district had been shelved for unknown reasons. The petitioner has informed the court that excessive extraction of water through borewells from near Kollidam has led to a drastic drop in the region's groundwater levels.
This is a roundup of important policy matters from May 15 - 22, 2017. Also, read the news this week.