New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal has directed a water packaging unit in Greater Noida to pay Rs 1 lakh to the UP Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) for operating without permission from any of the competent authorities and causing damage to the environment.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar directed Omsan Osmocare India Pvt Ltd which runs under the brand name "Osmofresh" to pay the amount to UPPCB within one week.
The directions came after the firm told the bench that they may be permitted to carry on their business since they have now obtained the permission from Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) to extract ground water as well as have consent from UPPCB.
"On the basis of the principle of polluter pays it is the liability of the applicant unit to pay for damage/pollution caused to the environment including the ground water.
"Consequently, we direct the applicant to pay a sum of Rs 1,00,000. The applicant would be permitted to operate the unit only if this payment is made to the Pollution Control Board," it said.
The Tribunal ordered that the amount received by UPPCB shall be used only for the restoration of environment activity and no other purpose.
It also directed UPPCB and CGWA to fix a meter on the premises of the unit and directed the firm to pay cess in accordance with the provisions of the Water Cess Act within six weeks.
The Tribunal had, on February 8, last year ordered shutting down of 34 packaged drinking water units in Noida and Greater Noida for extracting underground water.
The tribunal was hearing a plea of Noida resident Vikrant Kumar Tongad who had alleged that the underground water situation has reached critical dimensions in Noida and Greater Noida and there is also a serious water pollution problem there.