Sanitary conditions worsened as the strike of the Municipal Workers' Union entered the third week on Monday.
Locals faced the problem of poor cleanliness and clogged sewers and they feared the spread of diseases in the city.
The Udhampur Municipal Workers' Union is on strike for the past three weeks, seeking regularisation of temporary employees, who are working with the department for the past more than seven years.
Heaps of garbage could be seen scattered in city streets and lanes, thus turning the locality into a garbage and filth depot.
The stench coming out of garbage dumps is causing nuisance for the general public. The sewage drains are choked and dirty water overflowing in the streets breed bad smell.
“Poor sanitary conditions can spread diseases in the urban locality,” a majority of local residents feared. They said heaps of filth would increase chances of outbreak of malaria and dengue.
Meanwhile, social workers in Adarsh Colony area started the cleanliness drive, but local municipal sweepers objected to it. The drive was suspended after heated exchange of words.
Local resident and social worker Parvesh Kumar and Manju Gupta said residents were in favour of the genuine demands of sweepers. They said the administration and the government should hold talks with the municipal workers and end the deadlock.
In the absence of sweepers, city residents are dumping garbage at every vacant space available. Even vacant plots and spaces on the roadsides are not being spared. Worst to suffer are the city markets as well the lanes in the interior of city.
After the failure of talks with the director, president of the Safai Karamchari Union Mohammed Shaffi said none of the sweepers would resume work until the government issued appointment letters to temporary workers.
He added that they would not even allow anybody to clean the city as it was a matter of their future.
As the tussle between sweepers and the local bodies continues, it is the city residents who are bearing the brunt of inadequacies.