The order of the National Green Tribunal regarding hotels requiring CTO, Uttarakhand, 24/08/2020
Order of the National Green Tribunal in the matter of Pramod Kumar Agarwal Vs Uttarakhand Environment Protection and Pollution Control Board dated 24/08/2020.
Two applications were filed before the NGT (one of it by Sushila Touring Hotel) challenging the orders of the Uttarakhand Environment Protection and Pollution Control Board. The SPCB had asked the hotels that arrangements must be made for sewage treatment. Also consent to operate should be taken in terms of the Water Act, 1974 and Air Act, 1981.
Main contention of the appellant hotels was that they were operating since 1980. Section 26 of the Water Act does not require them to apply for consent to operate, unless a date was notified by the state government. The hotels do not have any plant or machinery or generator set or boiler. Therefore, the Air Act also does not apply, the hotels said.
The NGT clearly said that the hotels cannot avoid obligation under the Water Act to prevent discharge of any untreated pollutants. Moreover, section 26 applies to an establishment set up prior to 1974. The regulatory framework of Water and Air Acts was applicable to the appellants for running hotels where polluted water and air generation potential were not ruled out. The appeals were dismissed as the NGT did not find any merit in the appeals.