BMC’s air quality monitoring stations run in absence of scientist-in-charge: RTI

Of 52 posts in the civic body’s six air quality monitoring stations, laboratory and three mobile vans, 35 including that of senior scientists are lying vacant

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According to the response to a Right to Information (RTI) query, of 52 posts in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) six air quality monitoring stations, laboratory and three mobile vans, 35 including that of senior scientists are lying vacant.

RTI activist Chetan Kothari, who filed the query, said that the stations didn’t have a scientist-in-charge, and only one of the required five scientific officers.

The BMC has air quality checking stations at Worli, Khar, Andheri, Bhandup, Maravali, and Deonar, a research lab at Santacruz and three mobile vans at Worli, Andheri, and Wadala. 


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According to Kothari, the absence of staff has hit daily tasks such as inspection of industries for emissions and collection of fresh data on air pollution. Under the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981, the civic body is responsible for monitoring real-time data across air quality stations and submitting them to the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) every year. 

Kothari informed that the maximum number of vacant posts is that of junior scientific officers and lab assistants adding that the current staff strength is insufficient. 

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Vishwas Shankarwar, deputy municipal commissioner (environment), BMC, said that certain duties such as inspection of industries is the responsibility of the civic body, but they can’t do it anymore. The staff crunch is affecting their daily functions and they are in the process of recruiting more officers.

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BMC’s air quality monitoring stations run in absence of scientist-in-charge: RTI
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