Delhi govt’s Yamuna cell lists a series of steps for clean-up

Delhi: 21 Dec, 2021 (Times of India)


New Delhi: The Yamuna Cleaning Cell of Delhi government has planned a series of measures to check pollution in the river.To keep a check on polluting industries, mainly in the redevelopment areas, Delhi Jal Board (DJB) would be conducting fresh surveys. For this, three teams comprising eight officials have been constituted by the agency.

An order issued by DJB stated: “Teams are directed to take action against the illegal water polluting industries with immediate effect. They are also directed to survey the assembly constituencies for other such illegal polluting industries and take action accordingly without the approval of the competent authority.”

The first priority of these teams, including engineers, would be to check the electroplating industry being run in Moti Nagar, Mayapuri and Wazirpur.

The matter of 25 redevelopment areas not being connected to water treatment plants was also discussed and DJB CEO Udit Prakash Rai, who is also the chairman of the cell, unveiled the plan to rope in Jamia Millia Islamia to conduct a survey of all such areas within the next four months. The surveyors would be assisted by officials from Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) and civil defence personnel.

According to DPCC, around 2,000 water polluting industries currently operate in Delhi in the notified industrial areas. Rai directed the officials to find out within a week whether these units were connected to the sewerage system.

Currently, 675 JJ clusters do not have sewers and untreated wastewater generated by them enters the river. Out of the 671 community toilets of Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB), only 200 are connected to septic tanks. The effluent of most of these septic tanks is discharged into nearby drains. There are another 38 locations from where sewerage is directly discharged into the drains.

To tackle this problem, the outfall of the storm water drainage system would be trapped and routed into the nearby DJB sewage system and pumped for treatment to the nearest STP. This would ensure that untreated waste doesn’t get discharged into the river. DJB has asked DUSIB to provide data of all storm water drains running through slums to take further action.

A major hurdle faced by Delhi government to clean the Yamuna is the multiplicity of agencies. With the target of cleaning the river by 2025, a top priority of chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, this cell was constituted to expedite projects and overcome any administrative hurdles.