NGT contempt notice against UP govt

NGT contempt notice against UP govt
NGT contempt notice against UP govt

National Green Tribunal has issued contempt notices to Uttar Pradesh government and other authorities on a plea seeking action against illegal manufacturing, storage and transportation of ethanol by distilleries and sugar mills in the state.

A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar sought response from Akhilesh Yadav government, Principal Secretary, Department of Excise and Excise Commissioner of UP, Chief Controller of Explosives and others for non-compliance of its May 9 order asking all sugar mills without requisite licence to stop alcohol production.

Contempt notices have also been issued against Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation, Indian Sugar Mill Association and National Cooperative of Sugar Factories Ltd.

The matter is scheduled for hearing on October 6.

The order came on a contempt plea filed by NGO SAFE alleging that the authorities were allowing illegal operation of ethanol producing units without license and in contravention of the Manufacture, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemical Rules 1989, putting lives at grave risk.

It has also referred to UP government’s affidavit and contended that only two of the 35 distilleries had requisite license while the others were manufacturing ethanol illegally.

“The industries manufacturing absolute alcohol or ethanol were not only operating illegally without the requisite permission from competent authorities, but also manipulating the actual total production, storage and sales figures of absolute alcohol causing not only huge financial loss to state revenue but also jeopardising safety of people and environment,” the NGO said in its contempt plea.

The NGT on May 9 had directed that no manufacturer will produce absolute alcohol without seeking appropriate permission from the Ministry of Commerce, Chief Controller Explosives and other authorities.

“It is in view of the fact that under the Manufacture, Storage and Import of Hazardous Chemical Rules, 1989 and Chemical Accidents (Emergency Planning, Preparedness and Response) Rules 1996 as notified under the provision of Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 such permission is required,” the tribunal had said.

The direction was passed while disposing of the plea seeking closure of all the ethanol units operating without the permission or not complying with provisions as specified under 1989 Rules.

( Source – PTI )

CBI probe against Yadav Singh justified : Supreme Court

CBI probe against Yadav Singh justified : Supreme Court
CBI probe against Yadav Singh justified : Supreme Court

The Supreme Court today dismissed the petition of U P government challenging the order of the Allahabad High Court directing CBI investigation into corruption charges against former NOIDA Chief Engineer Yadav Singh, saying the state government should instead be happy.

“We sincerely feel that the case requires investigation by the CBI. Let the CBI investigate the matter,” a bench headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu said while rejecting the submission of senior advocate Kapil Sibal that any independent agency other than the CBI be entrusted with the probe.

Sibal, who was appearing for the Uttar PradeshGovernment, told the bench that it was “putting too much trust on the CBI” which was being used to “destablise” and “paralyse” the entire state government in which Yadav Singh was “hand in glove”.

However, his submission did not find favour with the bench, also comprising Justices Arun Mishra and Amitava Roy, which said that while appearing for Congress leaderDigvijay Singh in Vyapam matter, Sibal imposed full trust on the CBI probe.

“The moment you came for CBI probe in Vyapam matter, didn’t we entrusted it to the CBI,” the bench told Sibal, who was arguing that “let the matter (Yadav Singh case) go to some other agency like Special Investigating Team.”

While justifying the High Court order, the bench said, “Uttar Pradesh should be happy that the matter is now with the CBI.”

Sibal, however, said that the state government was never for the CBI probe into the matter as it was being looked after by a Judicial Commission.

He also made an attempt to target the Centre for the PIL which led to the CBI probe into the case by questioning the jurisdiction of the apex-court appointed Special Investigating Team (SIT) on black money which recommended thorough probe into the assets of Yadav Singh.

“Is this the jurisdiction of SIT. Can a Joint Secretary write this type of letter. What is this SIT on black money has to do with the matter of Uttar Pradesh,” the senior advocate and Congress leader submitted.

HC seeks reply from UP govt on PIL on Lokayukta

HC seeks reply from UP govt on PIL on Lokayukta
HC seeks reply from UP govt on PIL on Lokayukta

The Allahabad High Court today asked the Uttar Pradesh government to file its counter-affidavit on a PIL challenging the process of selection of a new Lokayukta for the state.

A division bench comprising justices Rakesh Tiwari and Mukhtar Ahmed directed the state’s Chief Standing Counsel to produce the affidavit before the court on the next date of hearing on August 11.
The order came a day after Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud recused himself from hearing the case as advocate Anoop Barnwal had challenged the selection process on the ground that the CJ was not being consulted in accordance with the Lokayukta Act.
Significantly, UP Governor Ram Naik yesterday returned the file sent to him by the Akhilesh Yadav government wherein he was apprised of a resolution passed by the cabinet recommending retired High Court judge Justice Ravindra Singh’s appointment to the post.

The Governor has asked the government to provide details of correspondence, if any, with the Leader of the Opposition in the UP Vidhan Sabha as well as the Chief Justice of the High Court.
As per Section 3 of the UP Lokayukta Act, appointment of an ombudsman for the state has to be made after due consultations with the Chief Justice as well as the Leader of the Opposition.