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Delhi Has More Garbage Than Land For People: High Court

The court said a will to work was needed to clean up the city and not funds as claimed by the three municipal corporations.


Updated:June 23, 2017, 5:55 PM IST
Delhi Has More Garbage Than Land For People: High Court
Rag pickers collect recyclable material at a garbage dump. (Reuters)

New Delhi: There is more garbage than land for people in the national capital, the Delhi High Court said on Friday, citing photographs in news showing the accumulation of solid waste in various parts of the city.

The court said a will to work was needed to clean up the city and not funds as claimed by the three municipal corporations who have blamed the Delhi government for not implementing the 4th Finance Commission recommendations.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar said the court's orders need to be read first "before we talk of implementation".

This was said in reference to the hearing held on June 21 when the bench had noted that its orders appeared to have been not read by the commissioners of the three civic bodies.

The bench told the three corporations, represented by Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Sanjay Jain, that if its orders regarding implementation of the 4th Finance Commission recommendations have not been followed by the Delhi government, then a contempt plea can be filed.

The commission was set up in 2009 to review the financial position of the civic agencies and make recommendations on sharing net proceeds of taxes, duties, tolls and fees levied by the Delhi government.

The court also said the rate at which the corporations were legalising the unauthorised constructions, it would soon that all of them would be "financially bust".

It directed the civic bodies to give a tabulation of the last five years' progression with regard to the demographic trend, variation in their staff strength and the development of infrastructure.

The bench also asked them to inform the court about the fate of the sewage treatment plants in the city. The court also took up the issue of the deaths of a rag-picker, who was electrocuted at a garbage heap where a live wire had fallen, and that of a child who fell into a pit allegedly dug up by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) four months ago.

Concerned over the two incidents, the bench sought a status report from the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) with regard to the death of the rag-picker and a similar direction was issued to the DDA in connection with the nine-year-old boy's death.

While seeking the status reports from the two agencies by June 27, the court said, "It was high time that we changed the way we work or should we wait for more people or children to die."

It also told the authorities, "You cannot say the crisis was because of the rains. This is happening because you are not doing your job."

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| Edited by: Aakarshuk Sarna
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