The High Court on Sunday directed the authorities to shut 27 factories and hospitals set up on the Buriganga banks in the capital without environmental clearance.
The Department of Environment has been asked to comply with the order by the next 15 days.
The court heard a report the Department of Environment had submitted recently saying the Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (Wasa) has many sewage lines connected to the Buriganga – a lifeline of the capital city.
Earlier, Wasa had submitted a report to the court denying that any of its sewerage lines flows into the Buriganga.
During yesterday's hearing, the High Court asked the Dhaka Wasa managing director to explain why legal action would not be taken against him for not complying with the court's order and providing it with false information.
The MD will have to explain to the court within the next 15 days.
A division bench comprising Justice Gobinda Chandra Thakur and Justice Mohammad Ullah passed the order upon a writ petition filed by the Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh.
Lawyer Manzill Murshid stood for the petitioner while Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority's lawyer Syed Mafizur Rahman represented Dhaka Wasa. Barrister MA Masum submitted a reply to the court on behalf of Dhaka Wasa.
The organisations facing closure include Medicare Diagnostic and Hospital, Riversite Hospital Limited, Chandni Textile Mills, Kadamtali Dyeing and Printing, TPI Textile Processing Industry, Nurani Textile Mills, A Majid and Sons Dyeing, Khadiza Textile Processing and Printing, and Agrani Dyeing and Printing.
The other establishments are Subarna Dyeing and Printing, Masud Textile, Sonia Dyeing and Printing, Jedda Dyeing, Seba Textile Processing Limited, Malina Textile Limited, Shams Dyeing, MJ Dyeing, Rafsan Dyeing, Aziz Metal, Alif Meta, Annex Corporation, Agrani Moulding, Matlab Iron, Perfect Wire, SS Electroplating Works, Khan Readymix and Mohammadia Pipe.
The Department of Environment in its report mentioned that more than 50 sewerage lines on the Buriganga north bank are releasing wastewater into the river.
Upon a writ petition by the Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh, the High Court in 2011 ordered the authorities to remove all establishments built up illegally on the Buriganga banks.
The court also ordered the authorities to stop dumping all types of wastes to keep the water pollution-free.