Waste management: SC stays NGT order asking Maharashtra to deposit Rs 12,000 crore

06:59 PM Nov 28, 2023 | PTI |

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday stayed an order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) directing the Maharashtra government to deposit Rs 12,000 crore as compensation for improper management of solid and liquid waste.


A bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud passed the order while hearing a plea filed by the Maharashtra government against the NGT’s September last year order.

In its order, the tribunal had said the compensation under section 15 of the NGT Act was necessary to ”remedy” the continuing damage to the environment caused due to the shortcomings in waste management.

Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the state, told the apex court that the NGT had directed Maharashtra to deposit Rs 12,000 crore.

”Notice… In the meantime, the direction issued by the National Green Tribunal requiring the state of Maharashtra to deposit an amount of Rs 12,000 crore as compensation in a ‘separate ring-fenced account’ shall remain stayed,” said the bench, also comprising justices J B Pardiwala and Manoj Misra.


The NGT had passed the order pursuant to the top court’s directions requiring the tribunal to monitor enforcement of solid and liquid waste management norms.

”Moreover, without fixing quantified liability necessary for restoration, mere passing of orders has not shown any tangible results in the last eight years (for solid waste management) and five years (for liquid waste management), even after expiry of statutory/ laid down timelines,” it had said.

The NGT had added that continuing damage was required to be prevented in future, and the past damage was to be restored.

It had determined the compensation in respect of gap in treatment of liquid waste to be about Rs 10,840 crore, and in respect of un-remediated legacy waste to be around Rs 1,200 crore, and rounded the amount off to Rs 12,000 crore.

The tribunal had directed the state government to deposit the amount in a separate ring-fenced account to be operated as per directions of the chief secretary and utilised for restoration measures.

The restoration measures for sewage management would include establishing sewage treatment and utilisation systems, upgrading systems/operations to ensure full capacity utilisation, ensuring compliance with standards, including those for fecal coliform, and establishing proper fecal sewage and sludge management in rural areas, it had said.

”With regard to solid waste management, the action plan would include setting up of required waste processing plants and remediation of left out 84 sites,” the tribunal had noted.


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