Dhaka, Dec 15 (UNB)
The High Court on December 15 ruled that no ship shall enter the Bangladesh territory for scrapping without having environmental and toxic waste-free certificates.
A division bench comprising Justice AHM Shamsuddin Chowdhury and Justice Sheikh M Zakir Hossain gave the ruling upon a supplementary petition to the original writ petition filed by Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers’ Association (BELA).
The HC in its ruling also asked the government to formulate necessary rules on ship-breaking in light of the Basel Convention 1989, Bangladesh Environment Protection Act 1995, Marine and Fisheries Ordinance 1989, Bangladesh Labour Act 2008, Bangladesh Territorial Water and Maritime Zone Act 1974 and Environment Protection Rules 1997.
The HC further asked the government to refrain from issuing no objection certificate (NOC) to the scrap ship importers without the environmental and toxic waste-free certificates.
In addition, the court directed the government and the ship-breakers to implement its judgment over scrap ships delivered on March 17, 2009.
The judgment says: No ship-breaking operation will take place without environmental clearance. The government has to ensure that ships are broken only after safe working condition for the workers is guaranteed and that shipyards have appropriate disposal arrangements for hazardous wastes and protection of environment.