Friday, April 20, 2012

Lok Adalat orders the District Administration to prepare plans to conserve Waste Lands in Kolar District

(This a typed version of the orders attached at the end)


The Deputy Commissioner in absentia has submitted affidavit through Chief Executive Officer ZP Kolar. In his affidavit, he has stated that the land is acquired in Mulubagal for solid waste management and has reported about the construction of approach roads and internal roads for the lands meant for solid waste management. He has further stated that the primary and secondary collection and segregation work will be completed in all the ULB’s in 6 months time.

Heard the Deputy Commissioner and perused the material on record.

The Deputy Commissioner has submitted very sketchy Action Plan and the information furnished is very unsatisfactory and lacks mission and vision. The Deputy Commissioner and all other concerned officers have not taken seriously to examine the issues as indicated by the Adalat. The individual affidavits filed also did not explain the present status and also the action initiated to deal with various waste generated including bio-medical waste, slaughter waste and sewage are very sketchy. The Commissioner’s-in-charge of urban local bodies failed to indicate about the future plans and present status except indicating some ADHOC measures taken by them to deal with the wastes. But, they have not indicated regarding house to house segregation and separating the recyclable and generating the revenue to the Municipalities as well as converting wet waste into compost or by adopting bio-methenation technologies. The various other departments including the forest, minor irrigation, Animal husbandry also need to apply their mind to understand the problems and to dispose the waste as well as to protect the life supporting resources. Kolar District is suffering from acute shortage of drinking water and also degradation of common lands and forest lands. Quarrying and Mining as created dramatic impact. The mono-culture plantation both in common lands and forest lands has already made a severe impact on hydrology and also on agriculture and horticulture productivity because of loss of natural bio-diversity.

The entire district has lost huge natural landscape of tree groves (Gundu thopus) and natural forest. With the result, the district has lost its character of ecological balance. The district economy depends on Mango, Sericulture and Diary. These three major activities are directly connected to the ecological service offered by the local bio-diversity of birds and pollinators and temperature regulation is critical for productivity. The local natural vegetation also induces local precipitation which is vital for productivity of Mango and Sericulture. The district also lost large number of lakes, Kalyanis formed by ancestor and also Gokattas. Therefore, rejuvenation of lakes and restoration of natural forest is very essential to improve the economic activity by providing ecological security and services.

For the reasons started supra, following directions are issued for compliance by the Deputy Commissioner, Kolar.
  1. Though some attempts were made to segregate Solid Waste, Bio-Medical Waste and slaughter waste. But, it needs serious attempt to motivate the communities to segregate the waste at source and to generate income to the municipalities. They should resort to segregate various waste especially dry waste and wet waste. The wet waste can be converted into a resource to generate CNG gas and electricity. Attempts should be made to convert all waste into an income generation activities by disposing segregating dry waste to the consumers.
  2. The district had large number of Tanks, Kalyanis and Gokattas built by philanthropist’s. But today the status is in a pitiable condition and they depend on underground water which is depleting rapidly. It needs very comprehensive action plan to restore watershed and tanks and percolation ponds in the entire district.
  1. Intensive reforestation and tree planting in common lands is vital to restore the umbilical connections by providing ecological security which offers ecological services to improve the economic activity by enhancing Mango, Mulberry and Dairying.
  1. The FES (Foundation for Ecological Security of India) has signed an MOU with Karnataka Government to restore the common lands by involving the local communities. They have already made a good impact in restoring few thousands of acres of degraded lands. Similar activities were initiated in the State of Rajasthan where they get less than 200 millimeters of rainfall per annum. Whereas, Kolar district gets average rainfall of more than 500 to 600 millimeters.
Therefore, the scope to rejuvenate the degraded lands and status of underground water is very high when compare to Rajasthan. Therefore, the district needs a comprehensive integrated plan to restore the degraded lands by involving the communities. You are directed to involve FES and other self-help groups working in your district to adopt appropriate technologies to improve the Eco-hydrological status of the district.

The Forest department should be involved and directed to prepare a very comprehensive Eco-development plan on the lines of FES not only for common lands but also to forest lands and they should constitute village forest communities to manage and restore the degraded lands.

The Minor Irrigation department and Zilla Parishad should prepare an integrated plan to capture the torrential rains due to cyclonic depressions. The district experiences more the 10 to 12 heavy down pour rainfall which constitute to an extent of 30% of the annual rainfall. This water has to be captured by inter linking the percolation tanks and minor and major tanks.

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