The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has taken suo motu notice of The Indian Express December 15 report, ‘How garbage is choking N-choe in Chandigarh.’
The report highlighted the dire condition of the seasonal stream N-choe running through the heart of Chandigarh. In response to the notice, the Chandigarh Pollution Control Committee (CPCC) submitted a comprehensive reply, acknowledging that sewage water was entering N-choe at two identified points near the roundabout of Attawa village in Sector 42 and the bridge at Sector 23/36 (Sector 36 side) and both these points have been plugged.
The reply, submitted by the member ember Secretary of CPCC, further states, “To curb garbage and construction & demolition waste dumping along the banks of Patiala-ki-Rao, extending from Khuda Lahora village to N-choe, the Municipal Corporation has initiated night surveillance and increased challaning to discourage waste dumping. It’s crucial to note that all choes, including Patiala Ki Rao, N-Choe and Sukhna Choe, fall within the jurisdiction of the Chandigarh Administration. The engineering wing of Chandigarh Administration is responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of these choes.”
T C Nautiyal, chairman of CPCC and director of UT Environment Department, affirmed, “The report that prompted NGT’s suo-motu action was found to be genuine. We provided geo-tagged photographs depicting ongoing work in the choes. NGT issued a notice via email to the office of the Deputy Commissioner, and CPCC filed a detailed reply today. MC officials were told to keep extra vigil on N Choe.”
Simultaneously, a joint team from the MOH wing of MC and the engineering wing of UT Administration surveyed the entire length of N-choe, starting from Bougainvillea Garden in Sector 3 to the last point up to Sector 53. In a three-part series, The Indian Express shed light on the poor state of three seasonal streams — N Choe, Sukhna Choe and Patiala-ki-Rao — where sewage water, garbage, including solid waste and wet waste, along with carcasses of dead animals, were being indiscriminately dumped.