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Ludhiana

Posted at: Feb 22, 2019, 8:21 AM; last updated: Feb 22, 2019, 8:21 AM (IST)

9 brick-kilns lose licences

Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, February 21

Operating brick-kilns with old technology in an illegal manner (as the government has banned operation of kilns which have not upgraded themselves) has cost the owners dear. The Food and Supplies Department has cancelled the licences of many brick-kilns.

A list of erring brick-kilns was sent to the department by the Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) for cancellation of their licences.

Simarjot Kaur, Joint Director, Food and Supplies Department, said action was taken against nine brick-kilns in Ludhiana. Similar action was also taken in Moga, Gurdaspur, Mansa and Sangrur. “We received a list from the PPCB and action was taken following complaints that these kilns were running on old technology in an illegal manner. So we took action,” said Simarjot Kaur.

Sarabjit Singh Dhillon, one of the brick-kiln owners here, said licences had to be cancelled because if the government continued to allow the kilns to be run with old technology, the entire motive of bringing out the zig-zag technology would be defeated. “The owners have spent lakhs of rupees on getting new technology to curb the pollution levels. How can the government allow the kilns to be run with old technology?” asked Dhillon.

Meanwhile, tussle among brick-kiln owners continued over the old technology issue. A photograph is being circulated at brick-kilns which shows one of the office-bearers of the association has a word with Chief Minister Amarinder Singh. Through the photograph, a message is being spread that kilns with old technology can operate and there is no such ban.

One of the kiln owners said such information is misleading. “I do not believe in any group but, at least, they should not mislead us. Some say it is illegal to run kilns without the zig-zag technology while others ask us to continue without fear. The major problem is that the state government is mum over the issue. Things would have been better if the government clears the air,” said the kiln-owner.

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