Sewage Treatment Plants not adhering to prescribed norms, exposing another water-borne disease outbreak in Shimla city
Shimla: The State Pollution Control Board (PCB) has made a glaring revelation that Shimla Jal Prabandhan Nigam Limited (SJPNL) and Jal Shakti Vibhag were not adhering to the prescribed norms for treating sewage plants.
Chairman Pollution Board Sanjay Gupta has raised the issue with Principal Secretary (Urban Development) and Secretary (Jal Shakti Vibhag) and rued that the SJPNL and Jal Shakti Vibhag were not adhering to the prescribed norms.
The SJPNL is operating 6 Sewage Treatment Plants in Shimla city and Jal Shakti Vibhag operates 70 Sewage Treatment Plants in different parts of the State. The pollution control board has found that both bodies were not adhering to the prescribed norms laid down by the National Green Tribunal.
In another glaring revelation, a Sewage Treatment Plant was proposed to construct at Panthaghati to bridge the gap in the treatment of sewage and Phytoremediation works in the catchment of Ashwani Khad is yet to start.
Board has also found that the work of rejuvenation of the polluted river stretch of Ashwani Khad is progressing at a snail’s pace and exposing the population of Shimla city to another water-borne disease. It’s worth mentioning that Shimla city has already faced a deadly jaundice outbreak many times since 2007.
As per the health department record, the diarrhoea outbreak in Hamirpur and Una district of the state has already crossed the 1200 mark, and with a glaring revelation of non-compliance of necessary norms of treating sewerage treatment plants exposing another outbreak of disease.
The Pollution Control Board Chairman Sanjay Gupta revealed the board has already issued directions to the concerned departments regarding improper operation and functioning of non-complying Sewerage Treatment Plants and directed to expedite the process of modification, up-gradation, expansion and construction of the plants on priority.
Sewage Treatment Plants need to improve: PCB
Sanjay Gupta said that the operations of the existing Sewage Treatment Plants need to be improved and expedited in the augmentation of a sewage management system which is impacting the water quality of rivers and natural aquatic resources of the State.
“Improper operation of existing Sewage Treatment Plants, as well as slow progress in augmentation of the sewage management system, is impacting the water quality of rivers and natural aquatic resources of the State,” Gupta said.
The Pollution Control Board has already directed the concerned departments to intervene in the matter regarding the improper operation of non-complying STPs and expedite the process of modification, up-gradation, expansion and construction of STPs to bridge the gap in sewage treatment in the State on priority.
Gupta said that the Pollution Board is monitoring the issues closely and shall hold review meetings soon.