I am pleased to report that victories are following on victories in our work with Ritwick Dutta in India!
Last year, we worked with Ritwick to secure a big win for a large urban area suffering from toxic industrial emissions:
One million people live in and around the New Okhla Industrial Development Authority (NOIDA) complex, 12 miles south of New Delhi. Thousands of families are exposed to a barrage of chemicals emitted into the air and discharged into the water daily by more than 100 factories in NOIDA. Ritwick petitioned the National Green Tribunal (NGT) for relief and the NGT responded positively: It banned the expansion of existing factories and the establishment of new factories, and ordered the Uttar Pradesh Pollution Control Board to provide a full accounting of toxic pollutant releases from all factories in the complex.
ELAW has continued to work with Ritwick to ensure that the Pollution Control Board is indeed making pollutant release levels available to the public, and identifying violators. I worked with Ritwick to analyze the latest figures and identified many facilities not complying with standards and releasing dangerous levels of pollutants. Ritwick shared this information at the National Green Tribunal. Last Tuesday, the NGT ordered 18 of the worst-polluting facilities to close until they can prove they are complying with environmental standards.
Congratulations to Ritwick for his perseverance and commitment to clean air and water for all.