GOA HERALD, OCTOBER 28, 2006
MARGAO, OCT 28 — Cuncolim police on Saturday took samples of liquid and solid waste from the premises of a hazardous unit as anti-pollution activists claimed that the factory was allegedly caught discharging chemicals in violation of a High Court order.
What’s more, the activists questioned the role of Government agencies responsible for monitoring the units. They apprehended that many units — presently under a cloud of suspicion — may manipulate things before officials of NEERI, Nagpur come down to Cuncolim to check the pollution levels.
The anti-pollution activists claimed that they were maintaining a watch on the factory since early Saturday morning even as the Electricity Department restored power supply to the unit in view of the visit by experts on November 1.
“A pipe was connected to the factory to drain out some chemicals outside the premises,” claimed Oscar Martins.
Fearing trouble, the factory management called in the Cuncolim police as activists descended on the industrial estate in the morning. Following oral complaints from both sides, the police decided to take liquid samples from the site as a matter of ‘abundant’ caution.
Cuncolim police station commander PI Siddhant Shirodkar said that the samples will be handed over to the Goa Pollution Control Board for tests.
“If the report proves that the liquid sample is some chemical, the police will book the unit under the provisions of law,” Shirodkar maintained.
Meanwhile, Martins demanded to know whether the authorities — including the District Collector — are carrying out their duties while monitoring the polluting units. He disclosed plans to draw the attention of the High Court over the issue.