In a recent development, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has commenced an investigation into a complaint lodged by environmentalist Dipesh Choudhary. The complaint alleges unauthorized dumping of municipal waste by the Ghaziabad Municipal Corporation (GMC) on a plot along Shahpur Road in Morta, Raj Nagar Extension. Choudhary, in his plea, voiced concerns regarding the violation of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016, and questioned the decision to convert the site into a dumping ground, particularly given the proximity of approximately 50 educational institutions.
Reports indicate that since 2021, GMC trucks have been disposing of the city’s waste on this 50-bigha plot, a mere 500 meters from a school attended by approximately 1,700 students. Choudhary has raised alarms about potential health risks arising from the polluted air resulting from waste disposal.
In response to the petition, the NGT has mandated the formation of a two-member committee. This committee will include the member secretary of the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) and a representative from the member secretary of the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB). The committee is entrusted with submitting its action report within eight weeks.
During a recent hearing on November 24, adjustments were made to the previously constituted two-member committee. The NGT excluded the District Magistrate (DM) from the committee, replacing this position with a representative or member secretary from the CPCB. The NGT issued a notice to the DM, seeking an explanation for allegedly violating the tribunal’s order by including a third member in the committee.
In a related update, the UP State Pollution Control Board submitted a ground report on November 11, providing information about three dumping sites in Pratap Vihar, Indirapuram, and Bhikanpur. The report confirmed the completion of remediation work at the Pratap Vihar and Indirapuram sites in July 2022. DM Rakesh Kumar Singh assured compliance with NGT orders and noted that a city health officer had conducted an inspection as per the DM’s instructions.
This case adds to a series of environmental concerns across the nation, as highlighted by recent NGT interventions. The tribunal has been actively addressing issues such as the mysterious sea discoloration in Puducherry and the unsafe dumping of construction waste near Silkyara, underscoring the urgency for proper waste management practices.