Delhi civic chief faces contempt charges

May 5th, 2009 - 7:11 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 5 (IANS) The chief of the capital’s civic body administration faces contempt charges for not abiding by the Delhi High Court’s orders on night sweeping in the city.
Justice Manmohan issued a notice to Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) commissioner K.S. Mehra and directed him to file a detailed reply in three weeks.

The court last Tuesday issued the notice on a petition of advocate Ravinder Raj, who sought contempt proceedings against the MCD commissioner, the Delhi chief secretary and the chairman of the Central Pollution Control Board for not implementing the court directions on night sweeping in the capital.

Following the directions of the high court in April 2003, the MCD had decided to continue the night cleaning in 46 select zones on a permanent basis and to extend it to more zones in future.

The night sweeping in 46 zones was started on an experimental basis.

The MDC decision came following a public interest petition that sought a change in the schedule for sweeping the city’s colonies’ streets from morning to night time.

The court had also directed the petitioner to give further suggestion to the MCD in this regard.

“It is hoped that the suggestions will be taken in the right spirit and action will be taken within a reasonable period of one year,” the court had then said.

In the contempt petition, advocate Raj submitted that the respondents had not taken any action.

The petitioner had sent representations to the commissioner of the civic body, the Delhi chief minister and the lieutenant-governor but no action was taken.

“City roads are swept between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m., exposing schoolchildren, office-goers and morning walkers to dust. Dust pollution can cause a number of severe ailments, apart from being a public nuisance. Health experts say dust has carcinogenic components like lead and aluminium,” the petitioner said.

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