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CAG slams these 6 PSUs for not having environment policy

An audit report prepared by the CAG of India has said that six out of seven subsidiaries of Coal India do not have an environment policy
New Delhi: An audit report prepared by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India has said that six out of seven subsidiaries of Coal India Ltd (CIL) do not have an environmental policy as has been mandated by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC). “Coal India Limited (CIL) amended its original Corporate Environment Policy (CEP) and formulated a comprehensive Environment Policy only in March 2012, followed by a revised policy in December 2018. However, six out of seven coal producing subsidiaries of CIL did not formulate policy,” the CAG said.

CAG report slams Coal India subsidiaries

The environment ministry stipulates that a well laid down environment policy duly approved by the board of directors of the subsidiaries needs to be in place. “Further, guidelines containing the responsibility and delegation at different levels in environment discipline were formulated by Coal India, but the same were not dovetailed in their operating manual by the subsidiaries,” the report said.

‘Not enough pollution monitoring stations’

Out of the 28 sampled (operating) mines and 2 washeries, the CAG observed that in 12 mines and washeries of three subsidiaries, only 58 monitoring stations (60 per cent) were established against the official requirement of 96, thereby rendering the process of air quality monitoring ineffective.

Pollutants exceeded prescribed limits at BCCL, CCL and MCL

“We observed that during 2013-18, out of 28 mines selected for audit scrutiny, in eight mines across three subsidiaries, viz., BCCL (one 20), CCL (four 21) and MCL (three 22) the pollutants exceeded the prescribed limits,” the CAG noted. Further, during 2013-18, 62 lakh Kilo-litre (KL) of untreated water was discharged to nearby water bodies by Lakhanpur and Basundhara (W) mines of MCL, thereby contaminating groundwater, the CAG said. CCL, BCCL and SECL continued to use groundwater for their mining operations without obtaining No Objection Certificate from Central Ground Water Authority, the Central auditor said.