Bird hits: Delhi govt to get tough
Aiming for a permanent solution to the menace of flights getting hit by birds at the airport, the Delhi government has asked the police to lodge FIRs against those running illegal meat shops and related slaughtering activities and throwing garbage in the open in areas around the IGI airport, especially in its flight paths.delhi Updated: Jun 29, 2011 23:37 IST
Aiming for a permanent solution to the menace of flights getting hit by birds at the airport, the Delhi government has asked the police to lodge FIRs against those running illegal meat shops and related slaughtering activities and throwing garbage in the open in areas around the IGI airport, especially in its flight paths.
The penalties in the rarely enforced Rule 91 of the Aircraft Rules, 1937, involve a fine of Rs1 lakh and three months in jail. The Environment department has also asked the Municipal Corporation of Delhi to increase the frequency of collection of garbage at Dwarka and Palam and increase the number of garbage bins since garbage strewn in the open has long been identified as the main feed for birds in the airport areas.
An evidently soft approach of the enforcement agencies has kept the problem alive for years. While DIAL has invested a lot in technology and manpower to mitigate the problem inside the airport, the main causes have long been identified outside the airport’s periphery. At this year’s first meeting of the multi-agency Airfield Environment Management Committee held recently, chairman and Delhi Environment Secretary Keshav Chandra has expressed displeasure over the lack of action on several pending issues, which have been on the “to-do list” of the agencies concerned for over a year. Two of the main problems—garbage disposal in Dwarka area and illegal meatshops in Palam and its neighbourhood—have invited the strictest attention as Delhi Police, the MCD and DIAL have been asked to pull up their socks.
“There were no action-taken reports on some key areas from the civic agency and also the airport operators, so the chairman has asked them to increase their work immediately, because the last meeting took place in August last year so there was adequate time to show results by now,” said a senior government official requesting anonymity.
Dumping of garbage in what is called the funnel area (landing path) of aircraft, slaughtering activities as well as water-logging in drains have kept the environment around the airport congenial for birds.
“The MCD was also asked to increase the number of garbage bins from the present 402 in Dwarka. Some of the work has started,” he said.
Garbage dumping and slaughtering activities as far as Mongolpuri, RK Puram, Vasant Kunj, and even far away Ghazipur invite birds, especially various kites, to the airport’s vicinity posing threat to aircraft. The airport operators are also supposed to create a database on drains in aircraft’s funnel areas, which they are still working on.