SMC, ERA play blame-game on chicken waste at city’s dumping site

Srinagar: Observing “gross negligence” in dumping of chicken waste at the only garbage site for this summer capital city at Achan, Jammu and Kashmir High Court has directed Commissioner Srinagar Municipal Corporation to delineate duties of stakeholders and the stage from which such responsibilities commence to fix the responsibility.
The direction by a division bench of Justices Hasnain Massodi and Dhiraj Singh Thakur followed its observation of gross negligence in dumping of the chicken and subsequent blame game by the stakeholders.
When the bench sought his reply, advocate F A Mir, counsel representing SMC, insisted that ERA (Economic Reconstruction Agency) was to be held responsible for the negligence.
However, ERA’s counsel advocate Zubair Ahmad pleaded that work assigned to the agency (ERA) commences only after SMC staff segregate the dumped waste into degradable and bio-degradable parts.
“SMC and its officials are to be held accountable for dumping chicken waste, dead chicken, etc. On the spot,” ERA’s counsel said.
Subsequently, the bench directed Commissioner SMC, primarily saddled with the task and overall maintenance of garbage dumping site, to file an affidavit delineating therein the duties of stakeholders and the stage from which such responsibilities commence so as to fix the responsibility for any negligence in maintenance of site.
The court also directed Pollution Control Board to take samples of discharge from three Lechate Treatment Plants (LTPs) at least once in a week and get them analysed so as to indicate whether the LTPs are functioning at the optimum level and the discharge is free from turbidity and other elements over and above the permissible level.
Earlier, the ERA informed the court three LTPs of 120 kilo litre/day capacity stand installed, ponds to store leachate constructed besides internal roads and surface drains.
The court directed that latest status reports by all the stakeholders shall be filed by or before next date of bearing on March 25.
The court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation filed in 2006 by Farah Khan, then a law student, seeking implementation of the provisions of Municipal Solid Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 2000 and Bio-Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, 1998 for effective garbage disposal in Srinagar city. Advocate SF Qadri represented the petitioner in the PIL.

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