With heaps of garbage lying everywhere coupled with a lackadaisical attitude of the authorities concerned, city residents are staring at an epidemic outbreak here.
The situation is worsening with every passing day due to the ongoing strike of sanitation workers.
Mounds of refuse are piling up on the roads and streets. Frequent spells of rain have left the dumping grounds stinking.
Political leaders and the administration are apparently least bothered to find a solution to this.
Resentment is brewing among the residents.
Some city-based lawyers are even contemplating to file a public interest litigation (PIL) in the court in this regard.
The health department has become a butt of jokes for organising seminars on theme "jithe safai uthe khudai"(cleanliness is godliness) whereas the local civil hospital’s surroundings bear an unsightly look.
Rajya Sabha member Avinash Rai Khanna, the chief guest at the seminar, and civil surgeon Surjit Singh extolled the virtues of a clean environment.
“When will the government stop fooling people Why don’t the municipal authorities or deputy commissioner try to address public grievances Congress as well as SAD-BJP leaders issue long statements in support of striking employees but none speaks a word about the need of cleaning the city,” said activist Rajinder Parmar.
“Passing near these garbage bins is a daunting task as strong stench emanates from them. The administration’s callous attitude is worrisome", he added.
“This is the height of administrative and political negligence. The officials and political leaders have adopted a criminal silence over this issue. Who will be responsible if an epidemic spreads? It is ridiculous for the health authorities to issue statements that they are fully equipped to handle any emergency arising out of insanitary conditions. It is shameful,” said senior advocate Maninder Pal Singh. He warned that lawyers might take the matter to court.
“People have started burning refuse at dump sites which is more harmful as polluted air vitiates the atmosphere. The administration did need not to be reminded of the prevailing situation. We still met the officials concerned and requested them to take appropriate action, but to no avail,” said Social Democratic Party president Jai Gopal Dhiman.
He expressed surprise that neither any court nor the Punjab State Human Rights Commission had taken cognisance of the issue which could have serious ramifications. He said the government should invoke ESMA Act to bring the sanitary workers back to work.