scorecardresearch
Crop residue burning: NGT direct Delhi, neighbouring states to set up special cells to daily monitor situation

Crop residue burning: NGT direct Delhi, neighbouring states to set up special cells to daily monitor situation

New Delhi, Oct 1 (PTI) The National Green Tribunal on Tuesday directed constitution of special cells in the office of chief secretary of Delhi and neighbouring states to monitor on daily basis this month the problem of air pollution by burning of crop residue.A bench headed by NGT Chairperson justice Adarsh Kumar Goel said that the problem of air pollution by burning of crop residue cannot be dealt unless effective measures are adopted and suggested that states should also set up such cells at district level to review the situation."We are of the view that this concern needs to be addressed by effective environmental governance which is inalienable duty of the State. No doubt, the funds have been allocated by the central government for the purpose but the central government ought to provide further guidance in terms of effective strategies to be used for monitoring the situation."It may be desirable to have a special cell in the office of the Chief Secretary so that the situation is reviewed on daily basis at least for next one month, even on holidays," the bench said.Similar cells may be required at the offices of District Magistrates or at such other levels as may be considered necessary by the state authorities, it said."Such monitoring mechanism may be finalised by October 7 and placed on the website of the state which may encourage public participation and enhance awareness," the tribunal said adding that sincere efforts at all levels will contain the problem.The NGT directed the concerned Joint Secretary in Ministry of Agriculture at the centre and Agriculture secretaries of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to appear before it alongwith their status reports on October 15. The tribunal had earlier directed the Ministry of Agriculture to furnish a status report on the steps taken to stop crop residue burning, which results in air pollution. The tribunal had earlier said there was a need to find a long-lasting solution for the problems of stubble burning and directed the chief secretaries of four states to appear before it to explain ways to prevent it. The green panel was hearing the matter after taking note of a news report published in an English daily titled, "All fiddle as crop stubble burns, farmers say solutions out of reach." The report had claimed that crop burning shoots up the carbon dioxide levels in the air by 70 per cent. It had said every year in October quality of air in Delhi, Punjab and Haryana deteriorates as farmers set leftover stubble and loose straw on fire after paddy is harvested. PTI PKS RT