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NGT issues orders on waste plant, tunnels at Deepor Beel

By Ajit Patowary

GUWAHATI, Dec 21 - The Principal Bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has asked the Assam government to accord top priority to the solid waste management plant for Guwahati city.

It has also asked Indian Railways to deal with the construction of tunnels in the Deepor Beel area in coordination with the State Government and other authorities connected with the project. Two tunnels have been proposed by the Railways in the Deepor Beel area to eliminate the possibility of trains running over the wild elephants there.

The NGT passed the order on December 18, 2018 in Original Application No 472/2018, Rohit Choudhury versus Union of India and others, in matters related to Deepor Beel, the lone Ramsar site wetland of Assam.

The NGT said in its order that both the State Government and the Railways should look into the above issues considering their criticality.

Senior Additional Advocate General of the State Devajit Saikia told the NGT on December 18 that a nine-member committee was constituted by the authorities on December 4 for identification of a suitable site for shifting the municipal solid waste plant, which is presently located at the Deepor Beel. For the purpose of shifting this plant, �two months period has been stipulated�, Saikia said.

Saikia also made a submission before the NGT that the State Government would take an appropriate decision on the Railways� proposal for construction of a tunnel in the stretch between gate numbers 273 and 274, located between Kamakhya and Azara stations. The decision of the State Government in this connection would be conveyed to the NGT expeditiously, he said.

Saikia, however, said that as the National Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd would also be involved in the case, it would be necessary to also take them on board.

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