NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday lashed out at Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal claiming that he had failed in his duty to manage the rising garbage problem in the city. Stating that he did not take effective steps to handle the problem, the SC even lashed out at the L-G for not attending a crucial meeting and observed.
"You (LG) say, I have the power. I am a superman. But you don't do anything," the court observed. The SC added that the office of the L-G has power over municipal corporations but it is not taking enough effective measures to handle the garbage issue.
The apex court is looking into the solid waste management issue across the country. The court asked whether it was the Centre or the Delhi government who is to be blamed for the "mountains of garbage" that are burying the city.
The court even said that Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal cannot be blamed for the problem in the city. "You can't drag the CM into this because L-G has said he has the authority," the court observed.
Just two days back, the SC had said that Delhi was getting buried under garbage while Mumbai was sinking underwater in the monsoon while the government was doing nothing. "You see, Delhi is getting buried under mountain loads of garbage and Mumbai is sinking. But yet, the government does not do anything. When the courts intervene, we are attacked for judicial activism. We are given lectures on separation of powers and encroachment of jurisdiction," it said.
The bench was annoyed after it was informed that around 13 states and several Union Territories have not yet formulated their policy for a solid waste management strategy. The top court slapped a fine of Rs one lakh each on Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal, Kerala, Karnataka, Meghalaya, Punjab, Lakshadweep, and Puducherry for not filing the affidavit despite earlier directions.
The bench also slapped a fine of Rs two lakh each on "remaining defaulting states/UTs" whose lawyers were also not present in the courtroom during the hearing, without naming these states.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the Delhi High Court had directed the three municipal corporations to file a status report on whether solid waste management (SWM) bye laws, framed on its directions, are being implemented in their areas. It also asked the Delhi Pollution Control Committee to submit a status report on implementation and inclusion of SWM bye laws framed under SWM Rules and listed the matter for further hearing on September 27.