Fearing protests from locals, the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has quietly started treating garbage at the controversial Kanjurmarg dumping ground.
The civic body has been treating waste in the landfill for a week now. The site has been receiving and treating around 100 metric tonnes of garbage every day.
Confirming this, Mohan Adtani, additional municipal commissioner said, “We have started the trials at the Kanjurmarg site. We have started with 100 metric tonnes. This quantity will keep increasing as time progresses.”
Civic officials said that if the trials continue to be successful, the site will process around 500 metric tonnes within a week’s time.
There are now three dumping grounds in the eastern suburbs, including the ones in Deonar and Mulund, while the western suburbs have none after the Gorai dumping ground was shut down in 2009.
The private contractor appointed by the civic body, which will be handling the site for the next 25 years, will treat 3,000 tonnes using the bioreactor technology while another 1,000 tonnes will be treated through composting.
Although the BMC has gone ahead with the dumping ground, local concerns over health and hygiene remain. Mangesh Sangle, local MNS MLA, who has been opposing the dumping ground, had recently said: “The BMC and the private contractor appointed need to assure the locals there will be no foul and hazardous smells, nor any fires like there were in Deonar. We fear this ground will turn into another Deonar dumping ground.”
Ever since the dumping ground was proposed, it has been dogged by controversies. To begin with, green activists have alleged that the civic body has been killing mangroves on the plot where the dumping ground was located. Local citizens as well as activists from the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena(MNS) have also protested violently against having a dumping ground in Kanjurmarg, which they believe could be a health hazard for locals.