CPCB yet to fix penalty norms for lapses in removal of demolition debris at Maradu in Kochi

Non-submission of action plans by civic body caused difficulty in identifying sites for disposal of debris

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) is yet to issue guidelines on fixing environmental compensation on the Maradu Municipality for not submitting action plans and data on removal and disposal of waste that emerged following the demolition of four apartment complexes, according to official records.

The State Pollution Control Board had sought advice / guidelines from the Central board for acting against violations by the municipal secretary and vendors engaged for waste removal by way of not submitting periodic reports, action plans, and data on removal and disposal of steel and concrete debris from the site.

A report submitted by the board before the Southern Bench of the National Green Tribunal said that non-submission of action plans by the civic body and service providers had caused difficulty in identifying sites for disposal of debris.

However, the board pointed out that it was satisfied with the removal of debris from the site by service providers on the directive of the municipality. But they did not provide action plans prior to transfer of waste from the site. Though they had submitted a proposal for a sand making unit at Kumbalam for processing debris, it was given up later despite receiving the board’s consent.

A portion of debris following the demolition of the Alfa Serene apartment had fallen into the nearby Vembanad lake. Local fishermen had protested against the delay in removal of debris while expressing concern about its impact on fish wealth in the region.

The municipal secretary had informed the tribunal that all necessary steps had been taken to comply with the directions of the authorities concerned on the removal of demolition debris. The official had also rejected the shortcomings highlighted by the State Pollution Control Board.

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