Delhi is likely to get dirtier in the coming months.With daily garbage generation up by 500 truckloads from last year and the city's three landfills already full to the brim, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) may be staring at a major sanitation crisis.
The existing landfills — at Ghazipur in east Delhi, Bhalswa-Jehangirpuri in north and Okhla in south — may have to be sealed soon (as early as April, some MCD officials say) and approval for a new one is caught in litigation. "We may soon have a situation where there will be no place to dump the city's garbage," said an MCD official.
Till last year, Delhi used to generate 6,500 metric tonnes (1,625 trucks) of garbage every day. This year, it is up to 8,500 metric tonnes (2,125 trucks). And the way consumption is going up, the MCD says, it may be 10,000 metric tonnes (2,500 trucks) of trash by next year.
"Malls and restaurants are piling up more trash. A burger comes in three layers of packaging. Even homes are generating more garbage. While the amount of garbage has increased manifold, we haven't added a single landfill site in 25 years," said Deep Mathur, MCD's press and information director.
The only alternative for the MCD is to develop a landfill site at Bhatti Mines, but the Delhi high court has prohibited this. The agency has filed a plea before the court. "We are hoping to get clearance to start work on the site soon," said Mathur.