Punjab News IIT experts list pollutants affecting Golden Temple


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CHANDIGARH: Main building of the Golden Temple in Amritsar is adversely affected due to pollution caused by industries, vehicles, generators, 'tandoors' (clay ovens) of restaurants around the shrine and burning of crop stubble by farmers. This was stated by experts from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi in their interim report submitted on Tuesday to the Punjab and Haryana high court.

IIT, Delhi was assigned to carry out a study on the effect of environmental pollution on marble metal used in the structure of the holy Sikh shrine. Experts had focused on a 10-km radius around the Golden Temple to collect data about pollutants affecting sheen of the structure.

Taking up the interim report, a division bench of the high court headed by Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul has asked Punjab government to take action as per recommendations of the experts and file a status report before it.

The state government informed the bench on Tuesday that Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) had voluntarily paid Rs 4 lakh towards expenses of the study carried out by IIT and remaining Rs 2 lakh had been given by the Amritsar municipal corporation (MC).

The issue had reached the court after a letter in that regard was written by Gursewak Singh. In the letter, Gursewak had informed that industry in and around the area was causing pollution to the gold plates fixed on the domes of the gurdwara. Taking suo motu cognizance of the letter, the high court had issued a notice to the Punjab government seeking its response on the issue.

After hearing the stand of the Punjab government and other agencies, the court had asked the state to conduct a study on pollution in and around the Golden Temple by a body of experts.

Thereafter, Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) tied up with IIT, Delhi for the study. PPCB has already set up an air ambient plant at the Golden Temple to measure air pollution and a rainwater sampling plant to check water pollution in and around the complex.