NGT blames Kerala Govt for Brahmapuram fire, warns of Rs 500 cr fine

Smoke emerging from the fire incident at Brahmapuram waste dump yard in Kochi. Photo: Manorama Online

New Delhi: The National Green Tribunal on Friday pulled up the Kerala Government over the disastrous fire at Brahmapuram solid waste treatment plant that led to severe air pollution in the city of Kochi for nearly two weeks early this month. 

A bench headed by Justice A K Goyal put the onus on the State Government after taking up the case voluntarily based on media reports. The Judge has also warned that a fine of Rs 500 crore will be imposed if necessary.

The tribunal held the government responsible for the fire, the delay in putting it out and the resultant threat to public health.

Meanwhile, the State Government informed the tribunal about the steps taken to douse the fire. It has also conveyed to the latter that the fire has been quelled and necessary actions are being taken.

Meanwhile, the counsel appearing on behalf of the State Government stated that the Kerala High Court has voluntarily filed a case against the government on the Brahmapuram issue, and therefore, another parallel case should not be filed by the tribunal. However, the bench responded that they are not interfering in the proceedings of the High Court.

The fire that broke in the mounds of garbage at the dump yard was doused after 12 days. Toxic fumes had engulfed the area and nearby areas of Kochi city causing severe distress to public. 

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