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Bombay HC asks BMC, MMRDA to address 'deplorable' state of rivers

Voicing concerns over the "deplorable" state of rivers in Mumbai resulting in drainage issues and water-logging during monsoon, the Bombay High Court on Thursday said authorities like BMC and MMRDA will have to jointly take immediate measures to address the issue.



Mumbai: Voicing concerns over the "deplorable" state of rivers in Mumbai resulting in drainage issues and water-logging during monsoon, the Bombay High Court on Thursday said authorities like BMC and MMRDA will have to jointly take immediate measures to address the issue.

A division bench headed by Justice VM Kanade was hearing a public interest litigation filed by advocate Atal Dubey, seeking a direction to the departments concerned to take necessary steps to tackle drainage problems and water-logging in the city each monsoon.

The petition was filed after heavy rains brought Mumbai to a halt in June last year.

The petitioner's advocate SC Naidu informed the court that after the July 2005 deluge, authorities had carried out dredging and rock excavation at Mithi river but as per a report by expert body National Environment Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), on a daily basis several tonnes of raw sewage are being dumped in the river till date.

"According to the report, the original depth of Mithi river was 16 feet but as of now the depth is less than 7 feet because of constant dumping of raw sewage," Naidu argued.

"This is a dangerous situation...If this is true...All authorities concerned have to sit together and find a solution. This is not the time to fight over jurisdiction. It is a matter of serious concern," Justice Kanade said.

The court noted that because the authorities are not complying with the statutory provisions of treating sewage before dumping them, the rivers in Mumbai are in a "deplorable" state.

"This leads to drainage issues and water-logging and then viral diseases like dengue and chikungunya are on the rise," it said.

The bench directed the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) to take immediate measures to stop deterioration of rivers in the city.

It also directed the authorities to consider the recommendations made in the NEERI report and implement those on a war-footing basis.

The petition was posted for further hearing on October 5. 

From Zee News

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