Suo Motu proceedings by Upa-Lokayukta-2 against MCC, KSPCB & KIADB

Spread the love

Suo Motu proceedings by Upa-Lokayukta-2 against Mangaluru City Corporation (MCC), Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) & Karnataka Industrial Area Development Authority (KIADB) for failure to prevent discharge of industrial effluent into the Phalguni (Gurupura) river.

Mangaluru: Activists led by Jokatte Nagarika Hitarakshana Samithi watch industrial effluent released into a stormwater drain, allegedly by Patanjali Foods (formerly Ruchi Gold), being cleaned near Jokatte, in Mangaluru on June 7, 2023. The Karnataka Lokayukta has now initiated suo motu proceedings against the Mangaluru City Corporation, the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) and the Karnataka Industrial Area Development Authority (KIADB) for failure to prevent the discharge of industrial effluent into the Phalguni (Gurupura) river. Upa Lokayukta-2 has directed Dakshina Kannada district administration to prevent effluent flow and file a report within a fortnight

KSPCB Recommends Shutting Down of Oil Manufacturing Unit after Protest by DYFI

Taking up the case based on media reports, under Sections 7(2) and 9 (3-a) of the Karnataka Lokayukta Act, Upa Lokayukta-2 K.N. Phaneendra has directed the MCC Deputy Commissioner (Administration), the KSPCB Environment Officer and the KIADB Executive Engineer to file their comments within 15 days. Justice Phaneendra also directed the Dakshina Kannada Deputy Commissioner to file a detailed report within 15 days of receipt of the order. Referring to the media reports, the Upa Lokayukta said effluents were being discharged into the river through underground pipelines, endangering aquatic life and posing a threat to human as well as animal life, in the vicinity. He has taken note of a protest staged by residents of the area against the menace.

Many industries situated in and around Panambur and Baikampady release effluents into the river without scientific treatment of the pollutants. However, the authorities concerned have not initiated any action, either to stop the dumping of effluents in the river or to close down the polluting industries. Open wells used by residents on the banks of the river to tap drinking water were polluted with the effluents, forcing people to buy tanker water, the Upa Lokayukta said. He pointed out that the State has the responsibility to protect all water bodies from pollution. Industries should establish sewage treatment plants and release effluents only after a thorough treatment.

Justice Phaneendra said if pollution is not contained immediately, it would have a cascading effect on the environment and human and animal life. He directed the KSPCB and the district administration to take effective steps to control the discharge of chemical effluents into the river forthwith, under intimation to the Upa Lokayukta and directed the case to be posted after two weeks. Environment Officer had advised KSPCB to close the Patanjali unit In light of Patanjali Foods Ltd., formerly Ruchi Soya Industries, discharging ‘untreated trade water’ into the Phalguni River, the Member Secretary of the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) was advised to ensure closure of the industry, which operates in Baikampady Industrial Area.

In a May 31, 2023, letter to the KSPCB Member Secretary, the KSPCB Environment Officer B.R. Ravi, Mangaluru said, “It is evident that the industry has violated the consent conditions issued under Section 25 of the Water Act, and knowingly discharged untreated trade water outside the industry, which is joining the backwaters of Gurupura (Phalguni) river and deteriorating the water quality. Hence, it is recommended to issue the closure directions to the industry under Section 33 (A) of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act 1974,”. He had also sought administrative approval for filing a criminal case for discharging untreated trade effluent into the natural drain.

Spread the love