Centre granted 4 more weeks to file reply
THE HIGH Court today granted four more weeks to the Union Government
and others to file reply on notices issued by the court on a public
interest litigation (PIL) demanding closure of the SMV Beverages
Mandideep (Raisen) bottling soft drinks of companies like 7- Up, Mirinda,
Pepsi, Coca Cola, Sprite and Mountain Dew for allegedly causing
pollution and ground water depletion in the area.
The Dayodaya Parivaar Dharmartha Trust and one another had filed PIL
alleging that the SMV Beverages utlised about one million litre water
daily due to which ground water level in Mandideep receeded from some
100 feet to 300 feet.
Also, the PIL alleged that the effluents coming out of the bottling
plant were polluting river Betwa and the river water turned black since
the factory uses lindane, DDT and its metabolites, malathion and other
chemicals in manufacturing the soft drinks.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice R V Raveendran and Justice
K K Lahoti allowed the prayer of the government counsels for some time
to file reply.
Advocate N S Ruprah appeared for the petitioners, Advocate Dharmendra
Sharma for the Union Government and Sanjay Agrawal for the State
Government. The court rejected the application seeking permission to
intervene in the PIL.