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Posted at: Nov 12, 2017, 12:12 AM; last updated: Nov 12, 2017, 12:12 AM (IST)

No ops at smoke-releasing units till further orders

Citing moisture in paddy, rice millers seek permission to use boilers despite ban
No ops at smoke-releasing units till further orders
Trucks lined up at Badli on the Jhajjar road on Saturday. The NGT has banned entry of heavy vehicles into Delhi. Photo: Manoj Dhaka

Parveen Arora

Tribune News Service

Karnal, November 11

In compliance with directions of the National Green Tribunal (NGT), the Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB) has directed all smoke-releasing industries in the National Capital Region (NCR) not to carry out any industrial activity till further orders.

After receiving the directions, rice millers called an emergency meeting here this evening. They sought permission to use boilers as they had a large quantity of paddy in their mills, which had to be sent to the government under custom mill rice. They said high moisture content might damage and discolour it.

“Yesterday we directed all industrial units emitting smoke to stop operations as the NGT had banned all industrial activity in the NCR till further orders,” said Virender Punia, SDO, HSPCB.

“These include rice mills, brick-kilns, agricultural-implement industry, mining units, construction-material units, sugar mills, paper mills and distillery units. The next hearing is on November 14,” he said.

“Any violation will invite prosecution under environmental laws and closure order under the Air Act. We have received consent from several units for not operating their industries till further orders,” he added.

“We received the notice today. We are concerned about health of the common man and agree to the NGT decision,” said Vijay Setia, president of the All-India Rice Exporters Association.

“We have purchased paddy from farmers on behalf of the government. Its moisture content is between 22 per cent and 25 per cent. It needs immediate drying, which is not possible without operating boiler,” he pointed out.

“We called a meeting, in which we discussed our next course of action. We will keep our industries shut up to November 14 and thereafter announce our next step,” he stated.

“We request the NGT to allow the entire rice industry in the NCR to use boilers, which are being used as per norms,” he said.

“We have to return custom mill rice by March 31. If stocks with the rice industry and basmati stock with farmers is not dried immediately, it will be damaged and get discoloured,” he added.

No hand on loom in Panipat

Panipat: More than 700 boiler-based dyeing units and spinning mills  and 92 brick-kilns in the district have been shut till November 14 by the Haryana State Pollution Control Board (HSPCB) on the directions of the National Green Tribunal (NGT). The NGT had issued directions to ban construction, industrial activity and entry of truck into the national capital up to November 14 due to poor air quality. Following the NGT directions, the HSPCB ordered all boiler-based industrial units in the NCR to shut down. There were traffic jams in Samalkha and on the Rohtak bypass after the NGT ban on entry of heavy vehicles into Delhi. Traffic was being diverted from various places in the district. Bheem Rana, president of the Panipat Dyers Association, said it was a setback to the industry. Pankaj Chugh, an industrialist, said workers were sitting idle, but industrialists would have to pay them. Mukesh Tandon, TNS


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