The “Polluter Pays” Principle in M.C. Mehta vs. Union of India & Ors. (1987) 1 SCC 395
Imagine playing with your toys and accidentally spilling paint on your friend’s favorite doll. What would you do? You’d probably clean up the mess and help fix the doll, right? That’s a bit like the “polluter pays” principle.
In the M.C. Mehta v. Union of India case, this principle became really important. It’s like a rule that says if someone, like a company or a person, makes a mess or harms the environment, they have to clean it up and pay for the damage they caused.
For instance, if a company releases harmful stuff into the air or water, and it harms people or nature, the company has to take responsibility. They need to clean up the pollution and pay for the harm they’ve done. This is fair because the company caused the problem, so they should fix it.
This principle is a bit like teaching us to be responsible for our actions. It’s a way of saying, “If you make a mess, it’s your job to clean it up and make things right again.” This encourages everyone, especially industries and companies, to be careful and not harm the environment. It’s like a reminder to take care of our planet because it’s the only one we have.