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Environmental Rule of Law: Industrial Pollution in Bangladesh

  1. Environmental Rule of Law: Role of Environmental Institutions Preeti Kana Sikder Assistant Professor Department of Law & Justice Jahangirnagar University
  2. Industrial Pollution
  3. BELA v Bangladesh 22 BLD (HCD) 2002
  4. List of respondents Ministry of Industries Ministry of Environment and Forests Department of Environment, Director General
  5. Background Factories Act, 1965 Factories Rules, 1979 East Pakistan Water Pollution Control Ordinance, 1970 Bangladesh Environment Pollution Control Ordinance, 1977
  6. Survey by Department of environment, Pollution control  Ecological imbalance is being caused continuously due to discharge of various industrial wastes into air and water bodies  The intensity of pollution caused by the factories and industrial units depend on:  Type  Location  Raw Materials  Chemical Effects  Production process and  Discharge of gaseous, liquid and solid pollutants
  7. Notification from Ministry of Industries on 5/6/1986 2.a) The ministry of industries will ensure that the industries having no environmental pollution control/protection system will adopt measures to control pollution over a period of next three years b) While sanctioning a new industrial unit, the ministry of industries will ensure that necessary environmental pollution control/protection measures are adopted by it. The department of environment Pollution control would render necessary co-operation to the ministry of industries in implementing above decisions
  8. Grievance of Petitioner No evidence found as to any effective measure or legal action taken against any of the factories/industries to curb their continuing discharge of the effluent and wastages into air and water bodies Rather industrial pollution is being continued unabated, uncontrolled and indiscriminately, not only by those industries identified in the notification but also by new factories that sprung up since then
  9. Grievance of Petitioner Thereby the respondents failed in performing their statutory duties and obligations cast upon them by the provision of the ordinance
  10. Prayer for appropriate relief relating to the matter of control of pollution from industries
  11. Locus standi Paragraph 10-12
  12. Importance of public interest litigation Paragraphs 9-12
  13. Submission of Petitioner Environmental Management in Bangladesh Chemical industries corporation (BCIC) provided a reply on 11/7/94 Newspaper clippings showing deteriorating environmental pollution New list prepared by department of environment containing 1176 industries as pollutants
  14. Dutiesoflawyers? Mahesh Chandra Mehta has won precedent-setting suits- • Against industries that generate hazardous waste; • Banned intensive shrimp farming and other damaging activities along India’s 7,000 kilometer coast. • Introducing lead-free gasoline to India and reducing the industrial pollution fouling the Ganges and eroding the Taj Mahal.
  15. Mahesh Chandra Mehta  A courtroom was set aside every Friday just for Mehta’s cases.  He has almost single-handedly obtained about 40 landmark judgments and numerous orders from the Supreme Court against polluters, a record that may be unrivaled by any other environmental lawyer in the world.
  16. PioneerofEnvironmental Jurisprudence M.C. Mehta’s public interest environmental litigation cases have formed the foundation for the development of environmental jurisprudence in India, and indeed, South Asia today. The constitutional right to life extends to the right to a clean and healthy environment. Courts are empowered to grant financial compensation as a remedy for the infringement of the right to life. Polluters should be held absolutely liable to compensate for harm caused by their hazardous activities.
  17. PioneerofEnvironmental Jurisprudence Public resources that are sensitive, fragile or of high ecological value should be maintained and preserved for the public. Similarly, the government has a responsibility to prevent environmental degradation. Even if scientific uncertainty exists, the implementation of preventative measures should not be delayed wherever there is the possibility of serious or irreversible damage. Green benches should be established in Indian High Courts dealing specifically with environmental cases.
  18. Relevantcases Mc Mehta v Union of India, AIR, 1987 (Paragraph 34) MC Mehta v Union of India and ors, AIR 1988 SC 1037 (Paragraph 36) Koolwal v state of rajsthan, 1988 (Paragraph 35) AIR 1988 SC 1115 (paragraph 37) Lakshmipathy v State of Karnataka (para 38)
  19. Sources used for this lecture Banglapedia, Factories Act, 1965 e=Factories_Act_1965 Dr. Mohiuddin Farooque, v Bangladesh and Ors, 22 BLD (HCD) 2002