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Delhi HC wants city's dirty air cleaned somehow by somebody in animals-poisoned-by-pollution-petition

Taking note of a report that said Delhi was the most polluted city in the world, the Delhi high court Wednesday said if nobody was looking into the issue, it will start giving directions and fix responsibility on the authorities.

A division bench of Justice BD Ahmed and Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva asked the city government to check whether the Supreme Court was seized of the issue dealing with air pollution in the capital.

“I came across a newspaper report saying that Delhi is the most polluted of all cities in the world. Which are the authorities concerned that is responsible for dealing with air pollution?” the bench asked.

“Look at the ambient air pollution in Delhi. Is there any matter in the Supreme Court dealing with air pollution in Delhi?” the bench said, and asked the government to inform it about the status of the case.

“I had a talk with a paediatrician. He said 50 percent of children in Delhi are suffering from respiratory problems. It’s not acceptable. If nobody is looking into the issue, it’s high time we act into it,” the bench said.

The air in Delhi was the most polluted in the world, according to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO). The report contained results of outdoor air pollution monitored in almost 1,600 cities in 91 countries.

The bench also asked the Delhi Development Authority to explore the possibility of converting a polluted artificial lake and 200 acres of surrounding land behind the Tughlaqabad Fort into a biodiversity park on the lines of the Yamuna biodiversity park.

The bench directed the Delhi Jal Board and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee to take instructions on maintenance of the cleanliness of water in the lake within permissible limits.

The court sought a report from the authorities about the minutes of the meeting held Jan 29 as per the court’s earlier order to chalk out remedial measures to clean the contaminated water in the Tughlakabad Ridge area.

The court was hearing a petition filed by Tughlakabad resident Manoj Kumar, who said there was a forest area in Tughlakabad and birds and animals were dying because of poisonous and polluted water released from illegal factories in the area.

The discharge has created an “artificial lake” and the polluted water “is spreading in the whole forest”, it said. It said animals were dying on a large scale.

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