NHRC notice to the Haryana Government over reported inaction on addressing the issue of untreated hazardous waste contaminating groundwater nearby Bandhwari landfill site in Gurugram; Union MoEF&CC also asked to submit a report

New Delhi, 13th June, 2022

The National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, India has issued a notice today to the Government of Haryana, after taking suo-motu cognizance of a media report about untreated toxic waste in a landfill site at Bandhwari village in Gurugram, spilling into nearby villages in Aravali area. The State government has been asked to submit a report in the matter within six weeks. It should include the steps taken/proposed to be taken to deal with the hazard.

The Commission has observed that the contents of the media report, if true, amount to violation of human rights due to negligence of public authorities. Besides the State Government, the Commission has also asked the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, MoEF&CC to submit a report within six weeks.

According to the media report carried on 8th June, 2022, a legal battle is already on since 2017 to address this issue but the residents of the nearby village continue to suffer. If the hazardous discharge from this landfill site of untreated waste spills over only after a few hours of rain, it can be imagined what situation will be during monsoon.

Reportedly, the Central Pollution Control Bureau in its report in the matter in 2017, had found that the groundwater of three villages around the landfill site was contaminated. The National Environmental Engineering Research Institute has also confirmed that the contamination had spread to two more neighbouring villages. But there has been no forward movement in improving the situation and it is posing a threat to the health of the people residing in the area as well as flora and fauna of the forest area.