SC puts ban on visual pollutionThe Supreme Court on Wednesday banned all forms of hoarding boards, paintings, posters and pamphlets which may constitute ‘visual pollution’ on walls, roofs and poles in the Capital.
The Supreme Court on Wednesday banned all forms of hoarding boards, paintings, posters and pamphlets which may constitute ‘visual pollution’ on walls, roofs and poles in the Capital.
Responding to a writ petition filed by environmental advocate Padam Bahadur Shrestha, a joint bench of justices Kalyan Shrestha and Om Prakash Mishra issued an interim order in the name of defendants to immediately remove or clean visual pollutants.
Kathmandu Metropolitan City, its chief and executive officer, its Environment Division, Solid Waste Management Technical Support Centre, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Urban Development, Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development, Kathmandu District Administration Office and Ministry of Home Affairs were mentioned as the defendants in the writ.
Advocate Shrestha had argued that posters and pamphlets put up in public places constitute waste as per the Solid Waste Management Act of 2011 and local bodies mentioned as the defendants were responsible for managing the waste as per the same act. Further, Local Self-governance Act of 1999 and Environment Protection Act of 1997 state that a municipality is responsible for managing the waste while the Interim Constitution of 2007 guarantees the right of every citizen to live in a clean environment.
Deciding that Kathmandu has lost its beauty due to visual pollution, the Supreme Court directed concerned agencies to immediately ensure clean environment in the city.
This is the first time in the country’s history where the Supreme Court has intervened in controlling visual pollution and law practitioners even claim that this is the first in the whole of South Asia.