The National Green Tribunal has directed the Haryana chief secretary to close restaurants and roadside eateries at Murthal violating environmental norms and hold a meeting to ensure effective measures for protection of environment and public health.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice A K Goel said no effective action on ground level has been shown by the authorities and there is unchecked continuing damage to the environment.
All roadside dhabas/eateries/restaurants need to be made to manage their liquid and solid waste and maintain general hygienic conditions, it said.
In view of acknowledged rampant violations for a long time in spite of due opportunity, effective action to be expected is to close the units till compliance and recover compensation for past violations on 'Polluter Pays' principle, following due process of law, the bench said.
"We direct the Chief Secretary, Haryana to look into the matter and remedy the situation by ensuring prompt and effective measures for protection of environment and public health. The Chief Secretary may hold a meeting personally within one month and fix responsibility in the matter for ensuring time-bound action," it said.
The NGT said that state pollution control board may also perform its statutory duties against the violators, apart from suggesting sewage and solid waste management practices for individual entities or jointly by more than one such entities and on that basis grant requisite Consent To Operate (CTO).
It had earlier directed the authorities to expedite setting up of a solid waste treatment plant for management of garbage generated by eateries and asked why a decentralised treatment plant has not been set up by the ''dhabas'' in the area.
The tribunal, while perusing a report by the state pollution control board, had noted that the integrated solid waste management project is expected to be completed by December 31, 2020.
Observing that the report shows a "sorry state of affairs", the bench had said the units which are emitting less than 10 KLD (kilo litres per day) effluent should be required to install modular STPs (sewage treatment plants) to avoid their transportation elsewhere.
The tribunal was hearing a plea filed by Abhay Dahiya hailing from Haryana and others against illegal dumping and burning of garbage, and discharge of untreated water by various establishments, including restaurants on G T Road, Murthal in Sonepat district.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)