Sabarmati River pollution: Gujarat HC seeks report on state of effluent treatment plants

The Gujarat High Court has sought reports on the condition of effluent treatment plants (ETP) and sewage treatment plants (STP) after hearing the suo motu public interest litigation pertaining to tackling Sabarmati river pollution in Ahmedabad.

In the order by the division bench of Justices JB Pardiwala and VD Nanavati dated January 7, made public on Thursday, the court has issued four key directives.

The court has directed that Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) and Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) along with the court-constituted Joint Task Force undertake the inspection of all the ETPs of the textile industries who have moved before the Gujarat HC seeking relief after their units were shut down owing to non-adherence to pollution norms.

The court has directed to submit a report on the condition of the ETPs be submitted to the court before the next date of hearing.

The court is due to hear the matter next on January 21.

The court also directed GPCB to look into the proposal made by Arvind Ltd of using zero liquid discharge technique of water treatment and further directed GPCB to take an appropriate decision at the earliest and give a final nod in the form of consolidated consent and authorization (CCA) ) or by any other legal mode, in this regard.

Meanwhile, the bench directed AMC to continue its drive of detecting and identifying illegal industrial connections into sewer and snap all such connections at the earliest and to ensure that the power supply as well is disconnected.

The direction for disconnecting power supply came following submission by the amicus curiae that units where illegal industrial connections were disconnected, were managing to discretely run their units in the midnight hours and that they are discharging the industrial effluent by other illegal mode and manner.

The court noted in its order that “This should be stopped at the earliest.”

Additionally, the court directed AMC to ask IIT, Gandhinagar to undertake the project of inspection of all the 14 STPs at the earliest.