HC suggests fresh exercise to appoint KSPCB chairman | Bengaluru News – Times of India

BENGALURU: The high court has said it would be appropriate for the state government to undertake a fresh exercise to select the chairman of Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) by notifying the qualifications laid down by it.
A division bench headed by Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka made this observation while disposing of a interlocutory application (IA) filed by the state seeking modification of the October 8, 2020 order wherein the HC had laid qualifications and also restrained it from going ahead with the appointment.
In the latest order, the bench has quoted section 4 (2)(a) of the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act which governs the selection of chairman of SPCBs. While pointing out that mere educational qualifications are not enough, the bench said the candidate must have experience in administering a government department/organisation/university/institute dealing with environmental issues. He/she must add value and stature to the institution and utilise experience in preserving and protecting the environment, it added.
No modification of order
In the matter of appointment of members, the bench declined to modify the order. It noted that in the June 19,2020 order and the September 21, 2020 corrigendum order, no qualification/requirement has been fixed for the appointment.
It pointed out that members are selected as representatives of certain department/industry/sector and the same doesn’t satisfy the Supreme Court’s verdict in Techi Taga Tara case wherein it was emphasised that members should have adequate scientific/technical/ legal background and add value to SPCBs.
The next hearing on the PIL filed by R Anjaneya Reddy, a social activist from Chikkaballapur, is on March 5. He had claimed the selection rules framed by the government flout the norms under the Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act and the SC guidelines.

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Sagar Biswas

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