SC strict over wetland preservation

Policy matters this week
Deepor Beel in Assam (Source: IWP Flickr photos) Deepor Beel in Assam (Source: IWP Flickr photos)

Supreme Court pulls Centre over preservation of wetlands

The Supreme Court has reprimanded the Centre over noncompliance with international conventions regarding preservation of wetland sites across the country. In its earlier order, the apex court has identified over two lakh wetlands and asked for their conservation. Neither the states nor the Centre has been able to explain how Rs 900 crore was used by the states and the Centre despite repeated reminders and orders from the court. 

A portion of Ganga declared no development zone 

The National Green Tribunal has declared an area of 100 metres from the edge of the Ganga between Haridwar and Unnao as "No-Development Zone". The tribunal has also prohibited dumping of waste within 500 metres of the river and any violations will lead to a fine of Rs 50,000. With many measures taken to clean the stretch between Haridwar and Unnao, the tribunal has now shifted focus to clean the next stretch of the river passing through Allahabad and Varanasi. Also, noted environmentalist M.C. Mehta has demanded a CBI probe into the money spent in the name of cleaning Ganga.

Settle differences on SYL by September 7: SC to Haryana and Punjab

As Punjab and Haryana continue to be at loggerheads over the Satluj-Yamuna link (SYL), the Supreme Court has ordered the two states to comply with its earlier order and has ordered the Centre along with both the states to come to a consensus on building the canal by September 7. Also, the apex court has warned the two states against any agitation on the issue and has directed them to take proper action to ensure peace.

PMC fails to start Rs 1,000 crore Mula Mutha river development project

In January 2016, the central government approved Rs 1000-crore project for Mula Mutha river development. The project has failed to kickstart as the central government has not been able to appoint a consultant for preparing the tender document. Mula Mutha river passes through Pune and is one of the 302 polluted rivers in the country. In January, the civic authority had signed an agreement with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for the pollution abatement of the river by January 2022. 

NGT raps Delhi government over 'mountain' dumps at landfill sites

Taking note of Delhi generating 14,000 metric tonnes of garbage each day, the National Green Tribunal has pulled the city government for a lack of infrastructure to deal with mountain dumps of decaying garbage at various landfill sites. The tribunal has also sought a report from the city government on the steps taken to lower the height of the garbage dumps at Bhalswa, Ghazipur and Okhla landfill sites. Along with this, it has also ordered the government to submit a report on the status of cleaning major drains that join the Yamuna river.

This is a roundup of important policy matters from July 11 - 17, 2017. Also, read the news this week.


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