BENGALURU: Over a hundred industries around Bellandur lake will come under the scanner for polluting the city’s largest water body. Dumping municipal waste or debris in and around the lake will invite a penalty of `5 lakh. These are among the many directives ordered by the National Green Tribunal on Wednesday.
The orders were issued in a suo moto case that the NGT had taken up after a fire broke out on the lake’s surface on February 17.
The green bench, headed by its chairperson, Justice Swatanter Kumar, said that a joint inspection team -comprising senior officials from different government agencies -should check whether the effluents released by each industry are within permissible limits.
It is estimated that over a hundred industries function in the vicinity of Bellandur lake and that a large number of them are garment and electroplating enterprises. “We’re surveying a 2-km radius to identify the exact number of industries,” KSPCB chairperson Lakshman told ET.
The bench set a two-week deadline to the state government to formu late an action plan to “completely prevent and control pollution in Bellandur lake” and carry out a one-time exercise to free the lake of silt, waste and chemicals.
The bench also barred dumping of municipal waste or construction debris in the buffer zone of the lake (75 metres from the periphery), specifying an imposition of `5 lakh penalty on anyone found doing so.
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The 919-acre lake and its smaller Varthur twin are at the end of the lake series in the KoramangalaChallaghatta valley and receive about 45% of the city’s sewage.The government has been asked to invoke the `polluter pays’ principle and get developers to bear the cost of diverting sewage away from the lake. There are 252 apartments in the vicinity which directly empty their sewage into the water body .
In an earlier submission, Urban Development additional chief sec retary Mahendra Jain told the green bench that 480 MLD of untreated sewage flows into the Bellandur lake, of which about 250 MLD gets treated.
However, the bench noted that the figures differed from those submitted by other agencies and expressed disappointment on the “apathy of government officials for not having any exactitude of the sewage being treated or dumped.”
News Source: Economic Times