Hearing on a petition regarding plastic waste and draining of sewer water in the Ganga river at Har ki Paidi in Haridwa, the High Court of Uttarakhand has directed the municipal corporation of Haridwar to submit a progress report by April 28. The next hearing on this petition will be held on April 28.
The public interest litigation in question was taken up for hearing by the division bench of chief justice Ramesh Ranganathan and justice NS Dhanik. As per the case details, Meerut (Uttar Pradesh) resident Narendra had filed a public interest litigation in the high court stating that the high court had ordered a complete ban on polythene in the state. However, despite this, the banned polythene is still being used openly at Har ki Paidi in Haridwar even as sewer water is being drained directly into the Ganga river here. In the past, the municipal corporation of Haridwar had been directed to ensure that sewer water is not drained directly into the Ganga river. The municipal corporation had been directed to set up sewage treatment plants to prevent the untreated sewage from entering the Ganga river here. However, till date the authorities have not been able to stop polythene waste and sewer from being drained into the Ganga, the petitioner stated.
It is pertinent to mention here that nearly three years after the high court of Uttarakhand banned polythene in the state, the state government has failed to enforce the order.
Some measures for raising public awareness and routine drives have been undertaken in parts of the state by the local authorities with limited success. It now remains to be seen whether the failure of the authorities to comply with High Court orders and the resulting damage to the Ganga and environment will elicit stricter measures in the near future.