Municipal solid waste (MSW) is one of the most serious pollutants in the country specially in Delhi, the National Green Tribunal has said while announcing a fine of Rs 10,000 on those found throwing waste at public places.
The green panel said that all authorities are under "statutory" obligation to ensure that waste is "collected, transported and disposed" of in accordance with Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 so that it does not cause public health hazards.
"All major sources of municipal solid waste generation hotels, restaurants, slaughter houses, vegetable markets etc. should be directed to provide segregated waste and handover the same to the Corporation in accordance with rules.
"Any such body, person, hotels, residents, slaughter houses, vegetable markets etc. which does not comply with the directions or throw their waste over any drain or public place shall be liable to pay environmental compensation at the rate of Rs 10,000 per default," a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said.
The tribunal noted that the national capital generates 9,600 metric tonnes of municipal solid waste per day and there is no "clear map" ready with the municipal bodies to deal with the huge quantity of waste.
It also directed Commissioner of each of the corporations to submit a scheme within a month before the Tribunal for providing incentive to the people who give segregated waste at source, "by way of rebate in property tax and on other hand to impose penalties on residents, societies, RWAs who do not provide segregated waste".
"It should be kept in mind that as per polluter pays principle, each person would be liable to pay for causing pollution, if the waste is generated. It is the duty of a citizen to ensure that said waste is handled properly and not to cause any pollution or cause inconvenience to other persons. The entire burden cannot be shifted on the state and authorities," the bench said.
The directions came while hearing a plea relating to mismanagement of municipal solid waste in Delhi and the terrible conditions that are prevailing near landfill sites.