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Published On: Thu, Jul 12th, 2018

‘You think you’re superpower, but won’t do anything,’ Top Court slams L-G

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kejriwal_1526289783_618x347NEW DELHI : Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal had to face the wrath of the Supreme Court on Thursday over the issue of disposal of city’s garbage. The apex court came down hard on the LG after it was informed that no one from his office attended the last three meetings to discuss ways to clean up Delhi’s three landfill sites situated at Ghazipur, Bhalaswa and Okhla.

Stating that he did not take effective steps to handle the problem, the SC even lashed out at the L-G for not attending a crucial meeting and observed. “You (LG) say, I have the power. I  am a superman. But you don’t do anything,” the court observed. An angry Supreme Court told the lawyers representing the Delhi LG.
The apex court is looking into the solid waste management issue across the country. The court asked whether it was the Centre or the Delhi government who is to be blamed for the “mountains of garbage” that are burying the city.
The court even said that Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal cannot be blamed for the problem in the city. “You can’t drag the CM into this because L-G has said he has the authority,” the court observed.
The SC added that the office of the L-G has power over municipal corporations but it is not taking enough effective measures to handle the garbage issue.  The Top Court’s reaction came a day after it asked the Centre and the Delhi government to clarify who could be held responsible for clearing the “mountain loads of garbage” in the national capital — those reporting to L-G Anil Baijal or to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.
“Now, we have the advantage of the verdict. There is mountain load of garbage in Delhi, particularly in Bhalswa, Okhla and Ghazipur. We would like to know who is responsible for clearing the garbage “those answerable to the Lt Governor or those answerable to the Chief Minister,” a bench of Justices M B Lokur and Deepak Gupta said.
The top court’s direction came days after its verdict on the power tussle between the Lieutenant Governor and the Aam Aadmi Party government in which it held that the LG has no independent power to take decisions and is bound by the elected government’s aid and advice.
The bench was annoyed after it was informed that around 13 states and several Union Territories have not yet formulated their policy for a solid waste management strategy. The top court slapped a fine of Rs one lakh each on Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal, Kerala, Karnataka, Meghalaya, Punjab, Lakshadweep, and Puducherry for not filing the affidavit despite earlier directions.
The bench also slapped a fine of Rs two lakh each on “remaining defaulting states/UTs” whose lawyers were also not present in the courtroom during the hearing, without naming these states.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the Delhi High Court had directed the three municipal corporations to file a status report on whether solid waste management (SWM) bye laws, framed on its directions, are being implemented in their areas. further hearing on September 27.
(With Agency Inputs ).

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