India - Relevance of Environmental Treaties in Interpretation of Statutes, Water Pollution
THE MEMBER-SECRETARY, KERALA STATE BOARD FOR PREVENTION & CONTROL
OF WATER POLLUTION, KAWADIAR, TRIVANDRUM v. THE GWALIOR RAYON SILK MANUFACTURING
(WEAVING) COMPANY, LTD., KAZHIKODE and others
The Cess Act grants rebates in the cess payable to those who had installed a plant for the treatment of sewage or trade effluent. The Company claimed that it had installed a treatment plant and was therefore entitled to a rebate. This claim was declined. The legality of the levy of cess was thereupon challenged in the writ petitions. The present writ appeals are taken against the findings of the Judge in the writ petitions.
Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act 1978.
If the plant installed is one which gives a satisfactory treatment of the trade effluent, rebate could be given under Section 7 of the Cess Act so long as the treatment of the effluent is effective from the point of view of the Pollution Act.
The Court was also of the view that the question involved is not a mere interpretation of a section of a statute but has larger overtones with a direct nexus to the life and health of the people. A reference to a treaty, protocol or convention is permissible while interpreting laws which have a link or background with such document. The Court surveyed recent international action in the area of environmental protection, including the 1972 United Nations Conference on the Human Environment, and national measures to develop environmental legislation and said that these had a direct connection with the enactment of the comprehensive Pollution Act, which the Court could not disregard.
Wood v. Waud (1849)3 Exch. 748
Copyright 1999- © United Nations, All rights reserved.