“Non-Technical Member Secretary, Chairman with forest background are ruling the roost by keeping constitution of Pollution Control Committee in abeyance”
Despite change in the nomenclature of Jammu and Kashmir Pollution Control Board into Central Pollution Control Board with the transformation of erstwhile State into Union Territory, ‘Redundant and Arbitrary’ laws are still governing the Board.
According to the sources in the department, the nomenclature of J&K PCB was supposed to be governed under the Central Pollution Control Board with the change of status of Jammu and Kashmir from state to Union Territory.
“A letter in this regard was submitted to the Additional Secretary, Forest, Ecology and Environment Department, Government of Jammu and Kashmir, seeking constitution of pollution control Committees in Union Territory,” said sources, quoting from the official document, which reads, “This is to communicate that a Model Composition of the Pollution Control Committees in the Union Territories under section 4 (4) of the Water (prevention and control of Pollution Act, 1974 and Section 6 of Air (prevention and control of air pollution) Act, 1981 has been prepared .
Sources said that the letter also talked about the Model Recruitment Rules for the post of Chairman and Member Secretary and Additional Secretary of the department was asked to constitute a Pollution Control Committee.
Meanwhile, discussing the content of the Model Composition of the Pollution Control Committee, sources said that the Chairman and Member Secretary should be recruited as per recruitment rules framed by CPCB.
“Member Secretary shall have Master Degree in Science or Bachelor Degree in Engineering in a discipline relating to environment and having 12 years of experience in a Regular Group with practical experience in matters relating to scientific engineering or management aspects of pollution control,” said sources, adding that it also included officers of the Central Government or State Gov, or Public Sector Undertaking or University or Government Research Institution or Autonomous or Statutory body, with two years of regular service in the grade rendered after appointment thereto on regular basis in the level 13 of the pay Matrix or Officer with six years in the grade rendered after appointing thereto on regular basis in the level-12 Matrix equivalent in the parent cadre or department.
Sources further claimed that both the incumbent officers’ Member Secretary and Chairman are ‘non-technical’ persons, not governed by the rules and regulations of Central Pollution Control Board, but J&KPCB.
“While the Member Secretary should be an environmentalist, Chairman was supposed to be an officer from Indian Administrative Services (IAS), but here in this particular case both the positions are held by officers of forest department,” said sources, adding that these officers to maintain their domination are highly reluctant to abide by the circular from member secretary Central Pollution Control Board, regarding composition of pollution control committee.
If sources are to be believed, these officers have created their own cadre system, contrary to the actual one.
“As per CPCB guidelines there is no post of Regional Director, but these two officers have patronized their two yes men on the post as per redundant J&KPCB guidelines, which is again a violation of the CPCB,” said sources.
Despite repeated attempts, Chairman J&K PCB, Vice Chairman and Member Secretary were unavailable for comments.