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The National Green Tribunal today lambasted the officers of Delhi government and other official bodies for "sitting in air-conditioned rooms and doing nothing" to check the spread of vector-borne diseases in the national capital. Castigating the government departments and municipal bodies over the situation, the green panel expressed anguish when they failed to provide the name of a single colony which was maintained in terms of proper hygiene. "Officers of public authorities are sitting in air conditioned rooms and doing nothing," a bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar said. "A number of officers are present in the tribunal but when enquired, not even a single officer could identify what measures have been taken with respect to dengue and chikungunya.
Even the sites of mosquito breeding have not been identified," the bench said. It said it was "pained to note that all concerned authorities have not acted sincerely and with utmost sense of urgency while dealing with the matter related to public health issue in Delhi. "Despite our directions, the authorities have failed to comply with our direction dated September 21. ... If concerned authorities would not act expeditiously, they would be certainly responsible for violating Fundamental Rights of their citizens." The tribunal warned that in case the authorities fail to comply with its order, then each government department would be liable to pay a cost of Rs 50,000 which would be recovered from salary of erring official of that department. The matter is listed for next hearing on November 2. Earlier, NGT had taken exception over non-submission of status report by the Delhi government on the steps taken by it to tackle diseases like dengue and chikungunya in the national capital. The tribunal had hit out at Delhi government, civic bodies and other public authorities for making "unbelievable" claims and "vague statements" regarding steps to tackle diseases like dengue and chikungunya. The bench was hearing a petition by former scientist through advocate Gaurav Kumar Bansal who had sought direction to authorites for not doing outdoor thermal fogging to control dengue.
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