Fearing a major health crisis, residents of east Delhi prayed for a breakthrough as the strike by sanitation workers continued on seventh day.
Roads in major localities such as Kanti Nagar, Jhilmil, Shahdara and Laxmi Nagar have turned into garbage dumps as over 2,000 metric tonnes of waste accumulated in east Delhi over the week. The East Delhi Municipal Corporation claimed that the strike was over and several areas have been cleaned but the residents did not agree.
“Tonnes of garbage can be found dumped on at least three places on the main road leading to Jagat Puri market. The garbage dumps are also overflowing. The piles of garbage are growing every day. I have not seen any truck in my area so far,” said Anjana Kapoor, a resident of Kanti Nagar.
Gurpreet Kaur, a resident of Laxmi Nagar, claimed that the situation remained the same and nobody had swept the road in front of her house till late Tuesday evening. “Garbage is piling up on roadsides. We can only hope the situation becomes better,” she said.
In Jhilmil, almost all garbage dumps were filled to the capacity. Residents claimed that several people who had been contracted by the residents to collect garbage have also not been coming for the past week.
“I had been collecting the garbage in polythene bags. I will have to go out myself and dump them now,” said Nihal Ahmed, a resident of Pratap Khand in Vishwakarma Nagar area.
Delhi stared at a major civic crisis as 1.4 lakh employees of all three municipal bodies threatened on Tuesday to join a strike by sanitation workers that has left large parts of the capital littered with mounds of rotting garbage.
A joint front of municipal workers said they will go on strike if their pending salaries are not cleared by January 18, the same issue over which sanitation workers of East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) launched an agitation last week.
Following the threat, the North Delhi Municipal Corporation announced that it will pay pending salary for two months. One month’s salary was transferred to the accounts of employees in other categories, an NDMC official said.
EDMC commissioner Mohanjeet Singh said majority of sanitation staff is back on work after the two months salary was transferred. “They are working day and night to clear tonnes of garbage collected on roads since Thursday. On Tuesday morning we collected 1,400 metric tonnes of waste through 58 trucks. These trucks were parked at MCD’s workshop in Jhilmil where a group of sanitation workers were on strike,” he said.