Achan Landfill Under NGT Scanner: Panel To Probe, Seek Solutions

(MENAFN- Kashmir Observer) Srinagar- The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has constituted a high-profile committee headed by Secretary Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to ascertain the“correct factual situation” in Achan dumping site in Srinagar city.

For decades, residents of the vicinity, including those in the downtown area of Srinagar, have complained about the“unscientific” dumping of waste in the former wetland. This dumping has resulted in a persistent foul smell emanating from the site, causing several health issues.


The Srinagar city generates around 600 metric tons of garbage, which is collected by the Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) and deposited at Achan.

The locals allege that solid waste is not being treated in a scientific way. However, the SMC claimed to have taken several measures including spraying anti-odor chemicals at the dumping site to control the smell.

The matter has finally landed up in the NGT. A petition has been filed by noted RTI activist Dr. Raja Muzaffar Bhat, seeking directions from the authorities to take necessary measures so that the people of Srinagar get some relief from the Achan Landfill site.

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The NGT in its order has directed the committee to ascertain the correct ground position and the extent of pollution caused by the illegal dumping at the landfill site in question, consequential health hazard created by it.

The court also directed them to suggest remedial measures including setting up of waste processing
facilities to zero down landfill and submit the report before the Tribunal within eight weeks.

The committee comprises representatives from the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the National Wetland Committee of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC), the Deputy Commissioner of Srinagar, and the Member Secretary of the J&K Pollution Control Committee (JKPCC). The Deputy Commissioner of Srinagar will serve as the nodal agency, as per the order.

In his petition, Dr. Bhat, through his counsel Advocate Itisha Awasthi, has raised the grievance against“illegal and unscientific” dumping of municipal solid, bio-medical
and plastic waste at the Achan landfill site.

As per the
disclosure the said landfill site is the only dumping ground in the city of Srinagar and
adjoining area.

“It has been pointed out by the learned counsel for the
applicant that a canal passes by the side of landfill and it joins the Achan lake which ultimately forms part of the Dal Lake,” Bhat submitted.

He further pleaded that almost 450 metric tons of waste is dumped every day at landfill site, which is spread over an area of 75

acres and which is located in close proximity to human habitation.

Bhat claims that dumping of waste at the landfill site is done in violation of Solid Waste Management Rule, 2016, the timeline set in the Action Plan for Municipal Solid Waste Management , Jammu and Kashmir, 2018, the Bio- Medical Waste Management Rules, 2016, and the Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016.

Notably, as per Bhat, NGT has passed several orders earlier in 2015 and 2017 but they weren't implemented in letter and spirit.

The next date of hearing has been set for 30 August 2024.

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