The National Green Tribunal has directed authorities to connect 93 villages of Greater Noida with a sewage network to ensure there is no overflow of effluent in drains and water bodies.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice A K Goel said sanitation and proper hygiene in villages is imperative for clean environment and protection of public health. The green panel noted the villages have been provided with internal drains but these are yet to be connected to the main sewer line.
"It is a matter of common knowledge that 93 villages in question adjoining Greater Noida are practically part of the urban area. Sewerage systems need to be upgraded and if necessary appropriate charges can be collected online or otherwise from the inhabitants.
"In what is seen as a ray of hope for 93 polluted villages, constituting the core of Greater Noida, the National Green Tribunal has directed all households/establishments to be connected to the sewers and no waste water be allowed to go into the ponds therein.
"In the interest of public health, the residents may be persuaded to have sewage connections and the authorities may explore levying charges against all the residents so that connections are not avoided for saving the charges. The entire exercise be completed in a time bound manner, preferably within three months," the bench said.
The tribunal directed the CEO of Greater Noida to remain present through video conferencing with the action taken report on December 14, the next date of hearing. The green panel was hearing a plea filed by Pradeep Kumar and others against the discharge of sewage on open land, roads, internal lanes and storm water drains in 93 villages of Greater Noida.
Advocate Akash Vashishtha, appearing for the petitioners, submitted that villagers are compelled to clean their sewage and waste water filled drains themselves and drink polluted water as most of them cannot afford purifying RO or other systems.
(With PTI inputs)