May 23, 2010
Shimla: Concerned over the failure of the state pollution control board to impose an effective check on polluting units in the industrial hub of Baddi-Barotiwala-Nalagarh (BBN), a local environment action group, Him Parivesh, has taken initiative to involve the affected people in monitoring of pollution levels.
The group organised a three-day training programme for local people with the help environmental activist Shweta Narayan, who had been campaigning against pollution in the industrial areas of Tamil Nadu under the banner of Community Environmental Monitoring Campaign.
“Several simple methods have been evolved by which communities affected by pollution can monitor and document the air, dust and water pollution levels in their areas. Documenting their common sense experiences in a scientific manner can provide the best evidence of pollution which cannot be refuted by the pollution control board and other agencies,” says Narayan.
Manshi Asher, an activist and researcher who is also a part of the organising team, points out that out of 1,000 units that operate in the BBN area, almost 200 do not have a valid licence, according to information obtained under the RTI Act. TNS