Coming down heavily on states for not complying with waste management rules, National Green Tribunal Chairman Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel on Wednesday said “pollution is no less an offence than murder or rape”.

“The world is taking it (pollution) so seriously. We are not. I am sorry to tell you that no state in the whole country is compliant with the rules and regulations of waste management. No shortage of funds can be given (as an excuse),” Justice Goel said at an event organised by the Gujarat government to mark the World Environment Day celebrations in the state. He also pointed out that cities like Ahmedabad have huge garbage dumps.

Speaking in the presence of Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and his two cabinet colleagues who handle the environment portfolio, the NGT chief said, “Six lakh people die every year in India due to diseases caused by air pollution, ranging from asthma to cancer, of which 50,000 are from Gujarat.”