The Supreme Court of India on Friday stayed construction activities in several States and Union Territories (UT) until they frame of a Policy under the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016. This strongly worded order was issued by a bench of Justice MB Lokur and Justice S. Abdul Nazeer after they slammed the states and UTs for their “pathetic attitude” in delaying the formulation of the policy even after two years.
The order read:
It is unfortunate that some States and Union Territories have not yet framed any Policy under the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016.
In case the States have the interest of the people in mind and cleanliness and sanitation, they should frame a Policy in terms of the Solid Waste Management Rules so that the States remain clean.
The attitude of the States/Union Territories in not yet framing a Policy even after two years is pathetic, to say the least.
Further constructions in the States/Union Territories are stayed until the Policy is framed.
The court also imposed a fine of ₹5,00,000 and ₹3,00,000 on Andhra Pradesh and Chandigarh, for not framing the policy yet, and also for not being present in court. While Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha and Uttarakhand were fined ₹3,00,000 each for not framing a policy or not complying with court order.
This case was taken up by the court on the basis of the news report titled “Outrage as parents end life after child’s dengue death” published in the Times of India dated 13th September 2015. After publication of the report, Chief Justice of India had passed an order on 16th September 2015 to treat it as a Suo Moto Public Interest Litigation. All the states and Union Territories of India are listed as respondents in this case.