Order of the High Court of Uttarakhand regarding sewage disposal in Ganga due to non completion of project by Uttarakhand Irrigation Department, 03/08/2022

  • 03/08/2022

Order of the High Court of Uttarakhand (Writ Petition (PIL) No. 109 of 2022) in the matter of Ratanmani Dobhal Vs State of Uttarakhand & Others dated 03/08/2022.

The petitioner has highlighted three projects undertaken by the Irrigation Department, Uttarakhand namely:

1. Construction of irrigation canal for re-use of treated water of Jagjitpur sewage treatment plant (STP) of Haridwar district under state sector (NABARD) costing of Rs.2365.39 lakh

2. Central Sponsored (GFCC) scheme, construction of flood protection works along the left bank of river Solani (UK-13) in Laksar Block in Haridwar district costing Rs.2260.57 lakh

3. Construction of Subhash Garh Irrigation Canal under AIBP in Haridwar district costing Rs.695.98 lakh

The petitioner states that these projects have not been completed even though a vast amount of money has been expended, and the said projects have failed.

The petitioner has placed on record the enquiry reports conducted by the concerned authorities in relation to the first two projects aforesaid, which bring out the gross irregularities in the manner in which the projects were undertaken. These preliminary reports highlighted the role played by respondents 5 and 6 - Dinesh Chandra, the then Chief Engineer Level II, Uttarakhand Irrigation Department, Haridwar and Rakesh Kumar Tiwari, the then Superintendent Engineer, Irrigation Work Circle, Haridwar.

The first of the aforesaid projects was to divert the treated water of Jagjitpur sewage treatment plant of Haridwar District. Failure of the said project is resulting in the sewage being discharged in the river Ganga.

The court asked the government of Uttarakhand to file counter affidavits specifically dealing with the enquiry  reports mentioned by the petitioner and placed on record. The respondents should also disclose as to what steps are being taken to complete the projects. Discharge of sewage water into river Ganga is a serious concern, and the same should stop forthwith. We direct the respondents to put in place alternate arrangements till the first project is completed. The proposal in respect thereof should also be placed before the Court in the counter-affidavit. The counter-affidavit should disclose as to what action has been taken against respondent Nos. 5 and 6, and all others, who are responsible for the failure of the aforesaid three projects. Counter-affidavits have to be filed within four weeks and the matter has been listed for October 18, 2022.