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Tuesday, Nov 12, 2019

Waste burning continues unabated in G Noida’s industrial areas

cities Updated: Oct 18, 2019 20:25 IST
Kushagra Dixit
Kushagra Dixit

Noida: Even as weather conditions are helping control pollution in the region, open burning of garbage continued unabated for the third consecutive day in Greater Noida’s industrial area. A spot check by HT revealed that roadside vendors were burning garbage in the absence of a waste management policy.

Managed and controlled by the Uttar Pradesh State Industrial Development Authority (UPSIDA) for the past 15 years, the industrial area has about 4,000 industrial units.

There are five major industrial sites in Greater Noida managed by UPSIDA. The UPSIDA officials said there is a plan in the pipeline to manage waste, it has been a long time coming.

“We are planning to have a holistic policy for garbage collection not just for Greater Noida but for entire Uttar Pradesh. There is a lack of awareness about waste management and it was only after a number of directions were given by the NGT that we felt the need for a policy,” a senior UPSDIA official, on condition of anonymity, said.

He added that recently, one of the parks in the industrial area was cleaned of waste.

On Wednesday, some unknown people had set the garbage on fire at Site-B Surajpiur industrial area, and it kept burning for several hours. While officials claimed that the situation was being looked into, similar incidents continued for the third consecutive day on Friday at several places in the industrial area.

According to locals, owing to the presence of a number of industrial units, a huge amount of solid waste is generated every day which is often dumped in parks, vacant plots and on roadsides. Residents say in the absence of a policy to manage waste, there is no designated place to either dump it or from where it could be picked up.

“The garbage burning is a regular thing. Since there is no waste management mechanism in Greater Noida, the practise over the years has been to burn it. People have learned to live with the fumes though it still bothers everyone,” Sanjay Jain, a resident of Greater Noida, who owns a factory in the area, said.

While there is no official mechanism to collect garbage, several scrap collectors were seen searching the dump and collecting whatever was useful to them.

“We collect stuff useful to us every day. Mostly, it includes metal and cardboards, which we sell at the scrap market in Dadri,” Sandeep Kumar, a scrap collector at Site-B, said.

In the wake of the huge garbage fire on Wednesday, the air quality in that area had dropped to ‘very poor’ category. District magistrate BN Singh had called the activity illegal and said strict action will be taken against those responsible.

Singh has said officials concerned have been directed to arrest anyone found burning waste.

“We have held a meeting on garbage burning Friday and I have instructed all officials to stay vigilant and arrest anyone burning garbage,” Singh, district magistrate, Gautam Budh Nagar said.

Archna Dwivedi, regional officer, UPPCB, Greater Noida, said, “We have imposed a penalty of ₹50,000 on UPSIDA for the garbage burning incident.”