The NGT has wielded the hammer on nine states for failing to submit compliance reports regarding appointments of chairpersons and member secretaries in their respective pollution control boards.
Reacting to a 45-day grace that Goa sought, the NGT referred to its August 2016 judgment on this issue and said that that was when the bodies were asked to fill vacancies as per guidelines laid down by it, and also to file compliance reports.
On Thursday (June 8), an NGT vacation bench, headed by Justice RS Rathore refused to listen to appeals and barred the chairpersons of nine state pollution control boards (SPCBs) from functioning with immediate effect. The judge said that the debarring was because the appointments had not been made in consonance with the judgment of the tribunal. “The judgment was delivered in August last year and you had to file compliance report in three months. But you have done nothing. We had given you ample time for complying with our directions. Today, you are seeking time verbally. You are not putting anything on record. This is not the way,” he pointed out.
The pollution board chiefs of Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Kerala, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Maharashtra were ordered to stop functioning.
A three-month grace period was granted to Delhi and two months to Punjab and UP.
The NGT has listed the matter for July 4.
—India Legal Bureau