SRINAGAR: Minister for forests, environment and ecology, Choudhary Lal Singh, on Wednesday said the owners of stone crushers, brick kiln and hot mix plants in the state have been asked to implement pollution control measures, failing which their units shall be closed.
The minister said this while replying to the discussion on the issue raised by Naresh Kumar Gupta regarding stone crushers and hot mix plants in view of their adverse effect on environment in the legislature on Wednesday.
Singh said that all stone crusher, brick kiln and hot mix plant owners have been directed for growing of green belt along periphery of their plants up to ending July, 2016, adding that after the deadline high powered team will visit their units for inspection. He informed the House that till date five stone crushers have been closed by the government in various districts of the state.
Singh said stone crusher industry, which was earlier categorized as red category, has now been categorized as orange under the latest categorization of industries by the Central Pollution Control Board.
The forest minister said that under the Environment Protection Rules, 1986 standards for stone crushers include dust containment cum suppression system for the equipment, construction of wind breaking walls, construction of metalled roads within the premises, regular cleaning and wetting of the ground within the premises and growing of a green belt along the periphery.
He informed the House that the industrial units are provided single or three phase power supply depending upon the load agreement and also the nature of load being used by the industry in accordance with the tariff. He said any power connection for more than 5.0 KW is given a three phase supply as per supply code. He said sanction to any industrial unit is being provided at different levels as per delegation of powers.
Regarding the power supply to stone crushers, the minister said that these are supplied power under LT Industrial Category as per the tariff order under which three phase supply is being provided for sanctioned loads upto 100 KWs through dedicated transformers dully metered on HT side. He said that in case of any unit not meeting the standards, it is put on notice and even then if a unit does not take corrective measures, closure orders are issued.
He said in 2015-16, closure of 5 defaulting stone crushers was ordered and notices were also issued to stone crushers operating without consent.
The minister added that an amount of Rs 10.78 crore have been realized as charges on account of electricity consumption from the stone crusher and hot mix plant in Jammu division in 2015-16, while as an amount of Rs 3.79 crore have been realized in Kashmir division.