H&UDD issues directions for early fulfilment of MoEF conditions
Company asked to get designs approved by IIT expeditiously
JAMMU, Jan 27: In order to ensure start of work on pollution abatement of River Devika and River Tawi at Udhampur by April, Housing and Urban Development Department has directed the Urban Environment Engineering Department (UEED) and the implementing agency to immediately fulfil the conditions laid down by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
The foundation stone of the project to be executed under the National River Conservation Plan will be laid by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his forthcoming visit to Jammu and Kashmir.
Official sources told EXCELSIOR that while granting administrative approval for the implementation of the pollution abatement of River Devika and River Tawi at Udhampur town, the Housing and Urban Development Department has issued directions to the UEED and company, which has been awarded the contract, to immediately fulfil all the conditions particularly those laid down by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
The UEED and the implementing agency have been explicitly told to make efforts for immediately obtaining No Objection Certificates from the concerned regulatory authorities including the Jammu and Kashmir Pollution Control Board without which work cannot be started, sources said.
“Directions have also been issued for early approval of the designs of the project from any Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) keeping in view highly technical nature of the involved works. Moreover, present water quality is also required to be examined through a reputed laboratory of the country as designs of the Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) will depend on the same”, sources further said.
Detailed design and engineering of the sewerage system and STPs based on proper survey and investigations before execution shall be ensured to achieve economy in the proposal as well as to avoid any shortfall in the design, the Housing and Urban Development Department has further directed the UEED.
The Housing and Urban Development Department has again directed the UEED to devise ways and means for increased flow of water into River Devika. “A comprehensive implementation schedule of the project shall also be prepared by the implementing agency expeditiously and submitted to the department further onward submission to the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests”, read the order issued by K B Agarwal, Financial Commissioner of the department.
Stating that instructions of the Housing and Urban Development Department have been communicated to the implementing agency, an officer of the UEED said, “we are hopeful of start of work on the project by first week of April while as survey has already been started by the implementing agency”.
Stating that sewerage works proposed under the project will form part of the City Sanitation Plan, the Financial Commissioner has directed the UEED to ensure effective control of industrial pollution as per existing environmental laws. “It should be ensured that the industries treat their effluents to prescribed standards before discharge into the sewerage system/river”, the order said.
The directions have also been issued for effective control on dumping of municipal solid waste and plastic waste and removal of existing dumped solid waste along the banks of River Devika and River Tawi to immediately avoid further pollution of these rivers.
“An action plan for giving 100% connections to sewer network during the implementation period of the work shall be prepared and a suitable provision is to be made in the bye-laws to enforce compulsory sewer connection and user charges on the beneficiaries in the project area”, the Financial Commissioner further said.
It has been made clear by the Housing and Urban Development Department that any cost escalation over and above the sanctioned cost for whatsoever reasons will be the responsibility of the UEED and the share of the Government of India and State Government of the total project cost shall be limited to Rs 186.74 crore—Rs 168.66 crore of Central Share and Rs 18.08 crore of State share.