NGT puts 20 crore fine on Rajasthan government for inaction on Bandi river pollution
The National Green Tribunal gave the Rajasthan government a fine of Rs 20 crore for failing to control pollution in the Bandi river by local textile industries.
The bench directed the Rajasthan chief secretary to deposit the money as an interim amount within one month towards environment compensation to the Central Pollution Control Board, which may be recovered from the polluters.
Additionally, the bench directed agriculture secretary to get an assessment done on loss of agriculture to the farmers due to the damage caused to agriculture land by use of contaminated water of the Bandi river, suggesting compensation to the farmers.
The tribunal asked the state pollution control board to ensure that no industrial and sewage effluent is discharged into the river (even treated) and instead, it should be utilised by the industries.
A study of surface and groundwater in Pali, conducted by the Centre for Science and Environment in 2008, had found almost 80 percent of the sample water unfit for drinking. The samples showed high alkaline and chemical oxygen demand levels, indicating dangerous levels of organic pollutants. The quantity of total dissolved solids was four times higher than the standard.
The case was transferred to the NGT from the Jodhpur High Court in 2012.