2023.04.22 (Vrindavan Today News): (Agra) – The Municipal Corporation in Agra has been fined Rs 9.35 crore by the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board for discharging filth and sewage through eight drains into the Yamuna River without treatment. The Board’s Chief Environment Officer Circle-4 has imposed a fine of Rs 5 lakh per month on the Municipal Commissioner as per the order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) for every drain falling directly without treatment.
The NGT had passed an order on May 21, 2020, based on which the Pollution Control Board issued an order for environmental compensation. The board inspected eight drains in Agra, including Taj East Gate, Mantola, Waterworks, Narayach, Bhairo Nala, Budhi ka Nagla, Anurag Nagar, and Pilakhar, on January 24, 2023. During the inspection, bioremediation work was found to be going on only on two drains. The board had earlier inspected the drains falling into Yamuna river seven times from June 29 to December 28, 2022, and found that the Municipal Corporation had only partially tapped the drains, leading to sewage overflow into the Yamuna River.
The Pollution Control Board has imposed fines on each of these drains, with Taj East Gate receiving a fine of Rs 1.65 crore, Mantola Nala and Waterworks Nala receiving fines of Rs 30 lakh each, and Narayach Nala, Bhairon Nala, Nagla Budhi Nala, Anurag Nagar Nala, and Pilakhar drain receiving fines of Rs 1.70 crore each, resulting in a total environment compensation of Rs 9.35 crore.
Dr. Vishwanath Sharma, Regional Officer of the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board, stated that compensation notices had been sent for different periods at the rate of Rs five lakh per drain. The Municipal Corporation and Jal Nigam did not respond to the notice sent in March, and thus, a notice of environmental compensation of Rs 9.35 crore has been issued under the order passed in the case of Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti vs Union of India.
In other cases, the NGT had imposed a fine of Rs 2 crore on the ADA in February for leaving the sewer of Nalanda town in the open, and the Pollution Control Board had imposed a fine of Rs 2,13,98,438 on Radheshyam Sharma, the builder of Nalanda Town, in the same case. The board had also imposed a fine of Rs 6.84 crore on the National Highway Authority in 2019. Environmental compensation has also been imposed on Jal Nigam, ADA, and UP Metro.