With deficient staff, infrastructure, SPCB reduced to toothless tiger


Jammu, Aug 25: With deficient staff and lack of infrastructure, the apex pollution control body in Jammu and Kashmir- the State Pollution Control Board (SPCB) - has become a toothless tiger.
 Facing neglect from the government, which is not giving any consideration to the recruitment of the staff mainly technical people, it has failed to take action against the violators of norms set by the SPCB for clean and green state.
 Sources said that board is facing acute shortage of environmental engineers, scientists, field staff and inspectors affecting its functioning despite increase in the different forms of pollution in past over a decade.
 “The responsibilities have increased manifold but lack of technical staff and poor infrastructure has virtually grounded the plans and projects to deal with the increasing level of air, water, noise and soul pollution”, said a official.
 Board was constituted by state government in 1986 as per the provisions of water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 and the Air (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1981. Later in 1988, provisions of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 were also entrusted to the Board for implementation.
 “In order to implement the control laws effectively in state, the Board commenced its activities in 1986 with a meager staff and in 1996, two Regional offices in Srinagar and Jammu was established but no step was taken to recruit staff to run different services”, sources said.  It is pertinent to mention here that last recruitment was made in 2001 and since then there is virtual freeze on the staff addition.
 “Board mainly lacks the technical staff to deal with the industrial units, which have emerged as major contributor of the pollution. The other is the vehicular traffic as they don’t have filed staff to deal with them”, said an official.
 Chairman of the board Lal Chand also said that staff shortage has affected their working in recent past but said that they have sent a proposal to the government and are waiting for their response.
 “Earlier, there were no recruitment rules. But now we have framed the rules and have sent them for approval to the state government,” he said.
 Sources said that PCB has been entrusted with various responsibilities by the government from looking after the vehicular pollution to keep watch on the toxic emissions in the industrial sector, but it has failed to take the role of an effective watchdog, making it easy for the powerful people to dodge the laws and rules.

Lastupdate on : Thu, 25 Aug 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 25 Aug 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 26 Aug 2011 00:00:00 IST

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