Activists demand stricter probe of dumping ground irregularities | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Activists demand stricter probe of dumping ground irregularities

Right from gross cost escalations to a flawed tendering process and now the inefficient and slow progress on managing the city’s waste scientifically, city’s troublesome waste management is signified by the state in which both the Deonar and Mulund dumping grounds are today.

mumbai Updated: Apr 10, 2013 01:44 IST
Kunal Purohit

Right from gross cost escalations to a flawed tendering process and now the inefficient and slow progress on managing the city’s waste scientifically, city’s troublesome waste management is signified by the state in which both the Deonar and Mulund dumping grounds are today.

Despite four years since the contracts had been awarded for both the projects to United Phosphorous Ltd, there hasn’t been much progress on the two grounds. According to additional municipal commissioner Mohan Adtani, the progress on both these dumping grounds is not satisfactory.

Another senior civic official said, “Had both these dumping grounds been well-equipped to handle a majority of the city’s waste, the system would not have been in such a bad shape. Even today, the city’s waste continues to remain untreated.”

As a result of this mess, many are now clamouring for a stricter probe into the way that awarding of the contracts of these dumps was handled. Environmentalist D Stalin, who has filed a petition in the Bombay high court asking for a complete halt in dumping at the Kanjurmarg dumping ground, said, “It is meaningless to appoint a special investigation team to probe such gross irregularities worth more than Rs9,500 crore. The chief minister is taking a very safe, politically correct stand by forming an SIT, instead of handing over the probe to the CBI.”

Congress legislator Baba Siddiqui, who had originally raised the issue in the state assembly, said, “This scam in the city’s dumping grounds is a perfect case of collusion between corporators, officials, consultants and contractors. Hence, what we need is a strong, independent probe which looks at exposing this nexus. The terms of reference of the SIT have to be very comprehensive.”

UPL sources said, “We have already communicated to MCGM repeatedly that we are unable to make expeditious progress until and unless it fulfils its contractual obligations of signing land lease and power purchase agreements. In the absence of these critical contracts, it is not possible to raise financing in build-operate-transfer projects.”