August 14, 2022

Karnataka HC suggests state govt for reconsidering KSPCB appointment regulations

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The Karnataka High Court has issued suggestions to the state government for reconsidering the appointment regulations for chairperson, member-secretary and members to the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB).

The notice was issued by the Court considering the modifications during the pendency of petitions do not comply with the Water Act, Air Act, Environmental Protection Act and also accord with the guidelines given by the Supreme Court.

A division bench monitored by Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Justice Ashok S Kinagi have instructed the state government to refrain from making any appointments presently. After considering the two PILs filed by R Anjaneya Reddy and Krishnaiah P Sreenath, the bench has directed the rule nisi.

The bench further iterated that KSPCB members should have efficient administrative abilities and also adequate technical knowledge in the aspects related to air pollution, water pollution, solid waste management, biomedical waste and construction waste clearance.

When the PIL hearing was in-process, the Karnataka state government presented the changed guidelines and parameters according to the inputs given by two-member committee consisting of Additional Chief Secretary and Principal Secretary representing the Forest, Ecology and Environment department.

The bench issued the guidelines stating that only an IAS or IFS officer could be reserved for the post of member-secretary, though the amendments have written about a compulsory degree of post-graduation in the discipline of science / engineering / technology and also have a relevant administrative background or experience in environment science. 

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