The National Green Tribunal on Monday took exception over the failure of the Ministry of Defence to submit a report on a plea seeking scientific disposal of waste generated by weapons, hospitals and other establishments of the armed forces.
A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel summoned the concerned Joint Secretary, Ministry of Defence and directed him to remain present with the status report on the next date.
"Needless to say that order of this tribunal is executable under Section 25 of the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010 read with Section 51 CPC by taking coercive measures including civil imprisonment or costs which aspect will be considered on the next date," the bench said.
The matter is posted for the next hearing on February 11, 2020.
The NGT had in September directed the Secretary, Ministry of Defence to file a status report in the matter after ascertaining the relevant facts and status of compliance of environmental norms from different concerned establishments within three months by e-mail.
According to the petitioner Anil Chopra, who is a retired Air Marshal and has also worked as a part of the UP Solid Waste Management Monitoring Committee, some of the establishments of the Armed Forces lack requisite knowledge on ecological issues and solution to the environmental challenges, particularly in virgin areas.
The waste generated by military weapons, domestic, industrial, biological, hospital and electronic activities (e-waste) needs to be scientifically disposed of in the interest of public health and environment, the plea read.
Such problems may also be faced in the desert and marine areas which need to be monitored at an appropriate level, it said.
The applicant has referred to three reports -- Environmental Issues and Waste Management by Armed Forces, Siachen Glacier Ecological Issues and Cantonments and Military Stations.