Free Press Journal

Drain cleaning: NGT warns Delhi officials of coercive action


New Delhi: Lambasting civic bodies for not cleaning drains in the national capital, National Green Tribunal (NGT) today warned Delhi chief secretary and the senior-most civic officials of coercive action like attachment of salary if they do not comply with its order on the matter. A bench, headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar, pulled up all the civic bodies of Delhi after they failed to show a single drain cleaned by them in compliance with the green panel’s May 8 order.

“Everybody cooks up a story and tells us something, you don’t have respect for law. If you have not done any work, you should have the courage to accept it”, the bench said and gave the “last opportunity” to their officials to implement them. “We make it clear that the senior-most authority of department concerned and Chief Secretary of Delhi will be personally responsible, besides bearing cost for non-compliance of the order in accordance with the direction of the court which would include attachment of salary and coercive action,” the bench said.

The NGT said “with utmost sense of regret … none of the parties including various departments and Government of NCT have complied with any of the May 8 directions”. The tribunal said that even Haryana government has not complied with its direction for establishment of Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) at Gurgaon border where the drain from Haryana joins with the Najafgarh drain in Delhi.

The tribunal said that none of the municipal cooperations of Delhi except for New Delhi Municipal Council has been able to show a drain which they have cleaned or dredged in compliance with the order. Neither have they shown that they fined any person Rs 5000 for throwing or dumping municipal waste in the drains.

“However, on the joint request from all the parties, one last opportunity is being given in the interest of justice and in interest of larger public interest to comply with the order,” the tribunal said while posting the matter for June 8.