Sunday, April 26, 2009

Residents fight for clean air

Residents fight for clean air
Subhash Chandra N S, Bangalore:
Residents of NGEF Layout, Sanjaynagar have been fighting a battle in vain against Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagar Palike (BBMP), which has reportedly turned a blind eye against an illegal garbage dumping site in the locality.

No relief seems to be in sight for the residents, who have been running from pillar to post for the last several months.

The Layout residents who had won accolades for their pro-citizen initiatives are now fighting for their right - the right for clean air!

The culprit being the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike, the residents are now knocking at every door of the Palike. “The problem started last year, when the door to door garbage collection was inaugurated here. But little did we realise that it would be a trouble for us because the Swacchata Vahini (vehicles carrying the waste) have been dumping at a vacant site,” Gopal Rao, Secretary, NGEF Layout Welfare Association told Deccan Herald.
The site, under litigation, is used to segregate waste to obtain plastic.

Appeal goes in vain

“The ragpickers hired by the contractor segregate the waste and burn the unwanted matter including waste rubber, plastic. The burning smell and smoke has become a serious problem for the people here. The BBMP is least bothered even after several complaints. Even an appeal by the authorities of a school in the region has failed to draw their attention,” lamented Manjunath, a resident.

“A request to the site owner to prevent it did not help, as he gets money in the form of rent and being a non resident of this place, he is least bothered,” said Rao.

However, BBMP officials when contacted, blamed it on another agency.
The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) said that it had not cleared any such garbage collection in Sanjaynagar, though it was mandatory for the BBMP to obtain permission from it.

However when questioned whether any action will be initiated against BBMP, Sharathchandra, Chairman, Karnataka State Pollution Control Board , said that as per the Environment Protection Act, it is the State Department for Environment, which can act upon on receipt of complaint, not the KSPCB.


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