Hyderabad: The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has told the state government and respective civic agencies to ensure that 100 per cent of the sewage entering the Musi river is treated by March 31, 2020.
Failure to do so would make the state government liable to payment of Rs 5 lakh per month per drain for default in in-situ remediation and Rs 5 lakh per STP for default in commencement of setting up the STP.
The NGT was hearing a case filed by Mohammed Nayeem Pasha. The Tribunal said: “The issue raised in this application relates to remedial action against pollution of river Musi at Hyderabad (Telangana) which is reported to be contaminated due to industrial and domestic sewage discharged into the river or into the drains connected thereto. The industries in the catchment areas are bulk drug and pharmaceutical units. Further allegation is that the flood plain zones are encroached and there is also dumping of Construction and Demolition (C&D) waste and solid waste. Water quality is not even fit for irrigation as per water quality criteria of CPCB as per reports of samples of water.”
Sewerage treatment is vital to the abatement of pollution in the Musi as a total of about 1,400 MLD (million litres per day) of sewerage is discharged into the catchment area of the river from either of the banks through nalas.
Sewage treatment plants (STPs) with a capacity of treating 592 MLD have been built along the river.
Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) have been prepared at a cost of `1,200 crore for creation of additional STPs at 10 locations, to treat the total amount of sewage.
The NGT based its order on a report published by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in August this year which had noted that there are 24 STPs in and around the Musi River. Two of them — Lingamaiah Kunta and Gopanpally — that have the capacity to treat 8 MLD are under construction.
Out of the 22 STPs that were monitored by the CPCB, two STPs — located at Krishnakanth Park and Pragathinagar — which can treat 3 MLD, were not in operation. No officials and operators were present at the site during inspection. Of the remaining 20 operational STPs, 17 are ‘operational without consent’.
It was found that Only 49 per cent of the sewage generated by the city is being treated in the existing STPs. Around 51 per cent of untreated sewage is thus discharged into the River Musi directly or through drains.
And out of 22 STPs, 13 units are not operating to their full designed capacities....