the owners of Delhi’s industrial units are up in arms about an unscheduled hike in the cost of setting up 15 common effluent treatment plants (cetps) in the capital. The Delhi government recently issued notices to more than 17,000 industrial units, asking them to pay an additional Rs 73.8 crore towards the revised cost of installing the cetps. But many industrialists have refused to shell out the money.
Following a Supreme Court (sc) order in 1996, the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (neeri) had estimated the cost of setting up the cetps to be Rs 90 crore. It had also identified 17,000 industrial units to be brought under cetp societies. But now the Delhi State Industrial Development Corporation (dsidc), which was given the task of building the cetps in tandem with these societies, has revised the cost to Rs 256 crore.
“We have paid whatever the sc asked us to. Why should we contribute more?” asks J R Jindal, president of the Delhi Factory Owners’ Federation. Jalaj Srivastava, commissioner of Delhi’s industry department, says: “Some industries approached us directly (not through societies) and are paying their dues. Others have moved the court.”
Srivastava, who is also the managing director of dsidc, explains that the increase in cost is mainly due to the additional cost of infrastructure