PCB hosts workshop to mark National Pollution Control Day

Jammu: An awareness workshop was organized to mark the National Pollution Control Day, here by J&K Pollution Control Board (PCB) at Conference Hall, PCB, Jammu.

This day is observed to commemorate the Bhopal gas tragedy. This year marks the 36th Anniversary of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy, which took place in 1984, as a result of industrial leakage of hazardous gas, Methyl Isocyanate, which resulted in death of thousands of people.

The workshop was organized to have a discussion about creating awareness among people and industrialists regarding pollution and need to adopt pollution control measures.

Chairman, PCB, Suresh Chugh, was the chief guest on the occasion. The workshop was attended by B. M. Sharma, Member Secretary J&K PCB; M.M. Shah, Legal Advisor; Dr. Qazi Rais, Sr. Law Officer; J. N. Sharma, Environmental Engineer; Ashiok Gupta, AEE; Neelu Sharma, PSO; Dr. Bilquees Ara, I/c Scientist C; Dr. Yashpaul Salgotra, Chief Scientist; besides all the Divisional Officer of Pollution Control Board, Jammu region.

A detailed presentation was made by Resource person Dr. Gaurav A Bhaduri (Head, Department of Chemical Engineering, IIT Jammu) who deliberated in detail about the preventive measures that Industries should adopt to prevent any accidental leakage of harmful chemicals / gases into the atmosphere. He highlighted various important safety measures that should be adopted by the Industries to ensure environmental safety.

Suresh Chugh, Chairman, J&K PCB, in his address, the appreciated the initiative taken by Regional Director PCB, Jammu, Dr. Syed Nadeem Hussain, to organize such awareness workshop by ensuring the participation of all concerned industrial units to understand the impact of industrial accidents and need to take preventive measures. He also stressed that prevention is better than cure and all public sector units and entrepreneurs need to work jointly to prevent any further damage to the environment. He also informed the gathering that JKPCB has started levying Environmental Compensation on the defaulters in line with the directions of the NGT, so that there is more compliance to Environmental Norms.

Er. J.N.Sharma, Environmental Engineer, while speaking on the occasion, stressed upon the need to provide the solution to the entrepreneurs of their problems, rather to go for harsh action. He said that main aim of the Board is to promote clean and green technology and to promote the concept of sustainable development in the country. He suggested that an Innovation Cell be created in PCB to educate the entrepreneurs in the field of cleaner technology.

M.M.Shah, Legal Advisor, also briefed the participants about the law enforcement and emphasized that more awareness is needed for the industrial sector for taking all preventive measures so that such tragedies do not occur.

B. M. Sharma, in his keynote address, deliberated that because of reckless dumping of extremely poisonous waste within the pesticide factory till 1984, this tragedy took place. He said that groundwater has also been found to be contaminated in places up to four kilometres around it and there are traces of pesticides, heavy metals and poisonous chemicals, including six persistent organic pollutants, at depths greater than 30 metres and distances of several kilometers from the factory in Bhopal. He added that better understanding of safety measures and storage of such deadly chemicals in sound manner is utmost important to avoid any on toward incident.

Anuradha, Scientist compared the event and Smt. Neelu Sharma Principal Scientific Officer presented a vote of thanks.