Saurabh Malik, Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, March 13. The Golden Temple in Amritsar will soon get back its sheen. Dulled by pollution to an extent, its gold will get back its glitter with New Delhi-based Indian Institute of Technology carrying out a study in this regard.
As a petition based on a letter to the Prime Minister on the matter came up for hearing, the Bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Mahesh Grover was informed by the Punjab Pollution Control Board that the IIT was being consulted on the issue.
The board, in its status report dated March 12, said it had consulted the IIT “for studying” the problem. “The IIT has agreed to undertake the study and suggest ways and means to restore the sheen”, the report said.
Taking up the affidavit, the Bench observed: “We have also noticed that the IIT has estimated that a period of six months will be required to undertake the study and submit a report”.
Fixing July 18 as the next date of hearing, the Bench added the progress “as may have been made by the IIT” be intimated to the court.
The havoc that environmental pollution is playing on the Golden Temple had come under judicial scanner about a year ago with the court calling for putting in place a mechanism to check pollution in the temple vicinity.
The matter was placed before the Bench after Justice Ranjit Singh took suo motu cognizance of the letter written by one Gursewak Singh to the Prime Minister, with a copy addressed to him.
Justice Ranjit Singh asserted: “One Gursewak Singh has addressed a letter in Punjabi to the Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh…
“I have received a copy of this letter through post, which is enclosed in original. The letter says that industry in and around the area is causing pollution to the gold plates fixed on the domes of Gurdwara Sahib.
“There has also been discoloration of the white marble… some invaluable mural paintings are also getting spoiled.
“Considering the importance of the issue, I thought it appropriate to place it before the Chief Justice for taking notice in public interest, if considered appropriate”.