2023.04.13 (Vrindavan Today News): The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has taken a tough stand on the persistent pollution of the Yamuna river in Mathura and Agra. The NGT has directed the Chief Secretary of Uttar Pradesh to monitor corrective action, following a hearing in response to petitions filed by residents of the two cities. The petitions alleged that commercial establishments and industrial units were discharging untreated sewage into the river, and that the authorities were failing to discharge their responsibilities.
During the hearing, the NGT bench, headed by Chairperson Justice AK Goel, noted that the authorities in Mathura and Agra had failed to take necessary remedial action in pursuance of earlier orders of the tribunal. The team of Judicial Member Justice Sudhir Agarwal and Expert Members A Senthil Vel and Afroz Ahmed had earlier reported huge deficiencies in sewage management in Agra, with only 58.25 MLD out of 286 MLD sewage flowing in the drains treated.
The pollution of the Yamuna River in Mathura and Agra is a significant issue that affects not only the environment but also the health and wellbeing of the people who depend on it. Given that Mathura is an important heritage city that attracts a large number of visitors, the NGT emphasized the need to urgently address the situation.
Shri Gopeshwarnath Chaturvedi, the petitioner in Yamuna litigation pointed out during the hearing that around 25-30 polluting industrial units are still operating in Mathura city, despite being listed in previous meetings of the Yamuna Action Plan. Moreover, dirty water from the Kosi drain continues to flow into the Yamuna, worsening the situation.
In response to the petitions, the NGT has ordered the Chief Secretary to ensure remedial action in both cities within a month and file an action taken report within four months. The next hearing in this case is fixed for August 23.
The NGT’s tough stand on the issue is expected to prompt necessary steps to deal with the pollution of the Yamuna River in Mathura and Agra. However, it remains to be seen whether the government departments will take the necessary action to ensure that the situation improves. Urgent action is needed to protect the Yamuna river and the health and wellbeing of the people who depend on it.