Report filed by the Municipal Council, Hamirpur on SWTP in village Dughneri, Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh, 02/06/2020
Reply to the National Green Tribunal on behalf of Municipal Council, Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh in the matter of Rita Sharma & Others Vs State of Himachal Pradesh & Others.
An application was filed in the NGT complaining of violation of Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 and Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 in village of Dughneri, District Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh, on account of failure to handle waste which was being burnt, causing air pollution, resulting in diseases and loss of livestock and contributing to forest fires and loss of wildlife. There was an increase in the population of monkeys, feral dogs and scavengers namely crows, vultures, etc. Dump site in the hilly terrain was overflowing and contaminating the water body, which was a source of irrigation. The NGT directed the Deputy Commissioner, Hamirpur, Municipal Council, Hamirpur and Himachal Pradesh State Pollution Control Board to submit a report within one month on the matter.
The Municipal Council, Hamirpur in its report had stated that it had not violated any of the norms as prescribed under the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 or the Environment Protection Act, 1986. The broad allegations in the O.A. is that due to the existing Solid Waste Treatment Plant, a lot of garbage and waste was thrown in open resulting in flies, crows, eagles, dogs and monkeys hovering around the garbage.
The municipal council has refuted the allegation that waste dumped at the SWT plant are being burnt daily and the smoke engulfs the village. The report said that "there has not been any frequent incidents of fire at the SWT plant as alleged and the waste at SWT plant was not mixing with Hathli Khad water body." The report noted that ambient air monitoring at SWT Plant was conducted by the Himachal Pradesh State Pollution Control Board (HPSPCB)on October 1, 2019 and the analysis results were within prescribed limits. The HPSPCB has been regularly monitoring water quality of Kunah Khad after confluence of Hathli Khad before its confluence into River Beas on a monthly basis and analysis results were within prescribed limits for primary water quality criteria for bathing water.
Note: The report of June 2, 2020 was uploaded to the NGT site on August 10, 2020.