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The National Green Tribunal today appointed four local commissioners to inspect drains, falling under different civic bodies, which join river Yamuna and apprise it whether they were unclogged as claimed by the authorities. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar appointed advocates Meera Gopal, Sharad Sharma, Arjun Nanda and Vinayak Gupta as local commissioners and directed them to inspect the drains at Gulabi Bagh, Chirag Delhi, Kalyanpuri and trunk drain no 1 at Seelampur today itself. A trunk drain is a large-capacity drainage or stormwater channel which clears local street drainage systems. "They shall also visit trunk drain no 1 and report to the tribunal as to whether these drains are clean from any silt, municipal solid waste and other wastes or non-acceptable substances in the drains. "They shall also observe and state as to whether these drains are carrying sewage and as a result thereof there is odour in the environment," the bench said. During the hearing, the counsel appearing for North Delhi Municipal Corporation told the bench that it has 195 drains which are more than 4 feet. While the South Delhi Municipal Corporation has 18,459 drains in total, 221 drains fall under the jurisdiction of the East Delhi Municipal Corporations, the NGT was told. The tribunal had earlier taken note of a drain clogged with garbage and municipal solid waste near a residential colony in North East Delhi and sought a reply from the Delhi government on the issue. It had asked the authorities to show cause as to why appropriate action should not be taken against them for violating the orders of the NGT. The order had come after the NGT took suo motu cognisance of a media report and picture showing a drain clogged with municipal solid waste near a residential area in Seelampur here. The green panel had said that all authorities are under "statutory" obligation to ensure that waste is "collected, transported and disposed" of in accordance with Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 so that it does not cause public health hazards.
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