Monday, July 05, 2010

Residents smell foul play in garbage plant project

Residents smell foul play in garbage plant project
BBMP Begins Construction On Playground
Sunitha Rao R | TNN

Bangalore: A garbage-segregation unit bang in the middle of a residential area. That’s precisely what the BBMP has set out to do at Lottegollahalli near Dollars’ Colony.
Just the thought of stinking garbage trucks lining up in front of their Sterling Residency apartment on a narrow stretch of road and the accompanying stray dog menace is giving sleepless nights to 160 families living in the area.
“What is shocking is that the garbage unit is coming up on a playground. Once the unit starts functioning, muck will pile up in front of our apartment, just 20 feet away. We won’t be able to stop stray dogs and cows from the dump. Why should they have a wasteprocessing plant in the midst of a residential area? Why didn’t BBMP interact with residents before taking such unilateral decision?” they asked.
The residents recently visited BBMP’s similar plant functioning near Yelahanka, which is quite away from residential areas but still created a nuisance in the surroundings.
What has irked them is the BBMP’s attitude. “We were never told about the construction. One fine morning in February, work began. No boards were put up on the nature of construction work. “When we asked the site engineers, we were told a gym, library and BBMP office were coming up. Later, we were told a waste-segregation unit would be built. It’s ridiculous that they are destroying a playground and constructing a garbage-segregation unit,” said L S Ram, a resident of Sterling Residency apartment.
Sterling Residency Owners had filed an RTI application seeking the nature and purpose of construction, which confirmed that a garbagesegregation plant will be constructed on the site, and work has already been entrusted to the Karnataka Land Army.
What shocked residents more was the outcome of another RTI application: the reply given by the assistant revenue officer of BBMP’s Hebbal sub-division was that the Palike didn’t have the site’s survey number.
BBMP has plans for 130 more such plants across the city, but people haven’t been kept in the loop. The Palike hasn’t shared details of studies done while identifying a place to set up plants. “It is a waste of crores of rupees. We are not against waste management, so long as it is implemented well. Make it mandatory to segregate waste at source and not by piling it up in front of someone else’s house,” say residents.
“Where else should we go to segregate the city’s garbage? The government is not giving land for waste disposal; there is no isolated place available in the city for such projects. We have to make use of vacant place available. We plan to have such units in every ward,” said BBMP officials.
Corporator D Venkatesh (Ward No 18, Radhakrishna Temple) chose to remain ignorant about the issue: “I do not know what is happening there. It comes under the responsibility of minister Katta Subramanya Naidu, who is also area MLA. I’ve been corporator only for the past two-and-a-half months; work began much before that.” Ironically, the same corporator, before the election, had promised residents that he wouldn’t let garbage lorries throw waste next to their apartment.


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