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Pune’s civic body must impose stiff fines, improve systems to prevent burning of trash

When there is no proper system in place, then it gives rise to garbage burning on open plots or even on the corner of roads, adding to the pollution caused by the smoke of vehicular traffic.

pune Updated: Jun 20, 2018 15:10 IST
The garbage burnt is a mixed one, it gives rise to toxic fumes and added new agents of toxic gases like furans and dioxins which are not prevalent in atmosphere.(HT PHOTO )

puneletters @hindustantimes.com

Garbage in the city is still not completely segregated and taken by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) which is one of the reasons why it is set on fire.

When there is no proper system in place, then it gives rise to garbage burning on open plots or even on the corner of roads, adding to the pollution caused by the smoke of vehicular traffic. Since the garbage burnt is mixed garbage, it gives rise to toxic fumes and to added new agents of toxic gases like furans and dioxins which are not prevalent in atmosphere. These affect children badly and often they complain of asthma which is now on a rise in Kharadi.

According to Christian, “PMC should appoint a person to regulate the garbage collection in areas where there is no segregation, besides they should also look at decentralised garbage management units, like the one on the burning ghat road in Koregaon park. This was identified some years ago as a decentralised place to collect all garbage and to recycle it.

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Gautam Idnani a volunteer of National Society for Clean Cities (NSCC) who has been strongly advocating the point that garbage burning affects the city over all said, “Garbage is burnt it’s burnt along the river side in the Boat Club area and also on South Main road of Koregaon Park. There is a lack of understanding, that it reduces the garbage by burning it but what people don’t understand it that it affects the air we breathe. Toxicity level is not understood by all strata of society of how the mixed waste is affecting us all.”

He said if the PMC maintains a regular watch and has a steady routine of garbage collection hrough Ghanta Gadi, it will not lead to the issue of burning of garbage issue. People are fed-up when the garbage is not pick up for days on end. What are the people supposed to do with the garbge lying there for days, he asked. Adnani pointed out that complaints on the PMC app are met with a delayed response.

Citizen activist Qaneez Sukhrani pointed out that burning of trash is one of the most serious offences and a strict penalty must be imposed by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC). The biggest hurdle in this is that for years, PMC has not found it important to implement the Solid Waste Management By-Laws which would give a clear picture on standard procedures and role play.

Right now the by-laws have been held up with the state government. If and when the Sanitation By-Laws are approved by the State Governemnt, penal action by the civic body can roll out after the violator/s are identified. Administration must slap high fines in the region of Rs. 5000 to Rs. 10000. For this, the PMC must first have the will and the strength to implement the By-Laws. “Vigilance and discipline sets in, only when it starts hurting the violators’ pocket, then burning will stop,” she said.

Sukrani said it is important that the PMC clears dry garden waste within a week. “This lies on public streets for months and miscreants start dumping mixed garbage and burn the whole lot, especially in winter,” she said.

She said the widespread burning of garbage was also a reflection of the failure of the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board in not implementing the provisions of the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act 1981.

Roseland Society turns garden waste into gold

One of the many initiatives that have received adulations with setting an example for the other residential societies in the city is the leaf and garden waste management systems in the Roseland Residency which was started in January 2017. With the collective efforts of all the residents of the society, the leaf and garden waste is collected and is kept in an open area inside the premises of the society. The residents water the waste daily and once in a week microbes and cultures are put in the heap. No foul smell of any sort is generated. It takes four months for the leaf and garden waste to convert into the compost which is then used by the residents for plantation of small trees in the society itself.

According to Sidharth Naik, Treasurer of the Roseland residency, “Leaf waste is usually more in quantity between the months of January to June. During this time, we generate nearly 5 tonnes of compost from the leaf and the garden waste.”

First Published: Jun 20, 2018 15:05 IST