Free Press Journal

Mumbai: 9,000 tonnes waste from Marine Drive is serious; who is responsible?


Vehicles move past plastic trash and garbage spewed back by the sea onto the streets during high-tide in Mumbai on July 16, 2018. Over 500 metric tonnes of garbage has been washed ashore across the coastline of Mumbai over the last three days. The United Nations warned earlier last month that the world could be awash with 12 billion tonnes of plastic trash by the middle of the century if use is maintained at current levels. / AFP PHOTO / Indranil MUKHERJEE

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Monday took cognizance of the washing ashore of nearly 9,000 tonnes of sewage at the Marine Lines promenade, last week, following high tide. The court said the matter is serious and requires urgent hearing.

A division bench of Justices Abhay Oka and Riyaz Chagla was moved by NGO – Citizens Circle for Social Welfare and Education, seeking directions to the government and civic authorities to frame appropriate guidelines for disposing the debris and other waste. The NGO also sought framing of guidelines for discharging the waste generated by citizens into the sea.

Appearing for the NGO, advocate Shehzad Naqvi informed the bench that a huge amount of waste was dumped on the Marine lines promenade, last week. “At least 9,000 tonnes of waste was dumped at Marine Lines promenade last week, after a high tide,” Naqvi submitted.

At this, Justice Oka asked, “We want to know who is responsible for discharging the waste in the sea?” Accordingly, Naqvi informed the bench that the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) was responsible for disposing the waste.

“It is the duty of the BMC to dispose the waste, however, the civic body does not follow a proper pattern. The BMC should first treat the sewage generated by citizens and then discharge it at a certain distance from the coastline. But this is never done,” Naqvi submitted.

Having heard the contentions, Justice Oka said, “This is a serious issue and requires a proper hearing. Considering the urgency of the matter, we place it for hearing on July 30.”