HC imposes Rs 2.5 lakh costs on UDD

J&K High Court has imposed Rs 2,50,000 costs on Urban Development Department for not complying with its directions on notification of solid waste management bylaws.

A division bench of CJ Gita Mittal and Justice Puneet Gupta imposed the costs after observing that the respondents did not comply with its orders. The court said that more distressing was the fact that an issue as important as the notification of solid waste management bylaws was not being treated with seriousness.

“In case after case, we are receiving complaints of the lack of any method in the management of solid waste,” it said. “. . . let alone implementation, we are not even being informed as to the status of the notification . . . by the local authorities,” it said.

The court directed that the fine amount be deposited in the Advocates’ Welfare Fund within two weeks.

The court asked the authorities to furnish details by October 22 in terms of order dated 17 August 2020 in which it had directed that all details of the local authorities and date of notifying of the byelaws be placed before it.

Meanwhile the court directed the Sonamarg Development Authority, SDA, to inform it about its method of collection of the solid wastes.

The court directed that latest status/action taken reports be filed as per its directions within two weeks and listed the pleas on 22 October.

The court was hearing PILs, one related to suo moto proceedings on Sonamarg environment and another by Environment Policy Group (EPG), seeking directions for solid waste management in J&K.