“Despite LG convening 25 meetings on the issue and making certain field visits, nothing has happened and it could be anybody's guess about what happened in these deliberations. In spite of these meetings, there are mountains of garbage in Delhi” Supreme Court
The Supreme Court has slammed Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal for doing precious little to deal with Delhi’s worsening garbage disposal crisis and not taking any solid steps to address the issue of overflowing landfill sites and inability to find alternative sites.
The SC even used his raging turf war with chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and Baijal’s assertion that he continues to be the boss despite the apex court’s recent ruling that he cannot take independent decisions and is bound by the elected government's aid and advice, to take a dig at him
“You say ‘I have all the power, I am Superman’ but you don’t do anything to address even the garbage issue,” an angry Justice Madan B Lokur told the lawyers representing the L-G.
The SC came down hard on the lieutenant governor after amicus curiae (senior lawyer appointed to assist the court) Colin Gonsalves informed that no one from Baijal’s office attended the last three meetings to discuss ways to clean up the city’s three landfill sites situated at Ghazipur (East Delhi), Bhalswa (North) and Okhla (South).
The L-G also faced the wrath of the SC bench after he said garbage disposal in the city was the job of the civic bodies and he was only in charge of monitoring it.
“This is nothing but passing on the buck,” the judges snapped back. Coming down hard on the L-G, the court said that despite convening 25 meetings on the issue, Delhi was still under mountains of waste.
The bench directed the office of the L-G to file an affidavit by July 16, indicating the time frame on the steps it is supposed to take to deal with the situation.
The bench also questioned the attitude of the LG and said no official from his office had bothered to attend a meeting chaired by the Delhi's health minister on the issue of solid waste management.
“GARBAGE MOUNTAINS LIKE QUTUB MINAR”
In December last year the Supreme Court rapped the Delhi government for not doing enough to dispose of the huge quantity of waste and rather dumping it on landfill sites which were already overflowing
It also asked the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislators to create awareness about garbage disposal among the people
“Garbage mounds near landfill sites are above 45 metres. These are almost like towers as likeQutub Minar. Height of Qutub Minar is 73 metres and these mounds are more than half the size. It's an alarming situation. Who is going to deal with it? You (government) have to deal with the problem”, the bench had said
The observations came when then Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar appearing for Delhi Chief Secretary pointed out that near three landfill sites at Okhla, Gazipur and Bhalswa, there are garbage mounds of the height of 45 metres. The bench had then asked Delhi government standing counsel Rahul Mehra that the AAP had MLAs across Delhi who could create awareness among the people about garbage disposal.