Menace of garbage burning continues to haunt Hinjawadi

Neha Basudkar
Friday, 4 January 2019

“We have no idea who dumped the garbage and burnt it. We have complained to MIDC and Gram Panchayat about it, but they do not pay attention and the rampant burning continues. Tuesday’s fire was visible till Hinjawadi Phase 1 and neither the Gram Panchayat or officials from MIDC turned up.” — Ravindra Sinha, member of Hinjawadi IT Park Residents’ Welfare Association (HIRWA)

PUNE: The New Year began on a smoky note for many residents of Hinjawadi, the IT hub of Pune which houses some of the best companies in the world, and yet lacks basic civic amenities. 

Burning garbage in the open is going on unabated as the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) and Gram Panchayat - responsible for administration of Hinjawadi - are ignoring the pleas of residents of Hinjewadi IT Park to stop rampant dumping and burning of garbage. 

On January 1, an empty space near Hinjawadi Phase 3 cross road, where heaps of garbage was being dumped, was set on fire in broad daylight. Residents of nearby areas complained of smoke and health problems and some took to social media to post videos.

MIDC Executive Engineer Nilesh Modhave shrugged off any responsibility saying they are not the concerned body to check garbage dumping in Hinjawadi. The Gram Panchayat held an illegal scrap dealer responsible for the fire. 

“The fire that took place on Tuesday was in the released land of MIDC which doesn’t come under our control,” Modhave said.

Bharat Patil, Gram Vikas Adhikari of Maan village investigated the issue and informed Sakal Times that a scrap dealer illegally running business in the open space at Hinjawadi Phase 3 had dumped all the plastic, foam and rubber material and then burned it.

Patil said he will take action after meeting the alleged scrap dealer. 

Vipesh Deore, Chairman of Megapolis Sparklet Co-operative Housing Society, said, “On Tuesday, the garbage was set on fire at 2.30 pm and it was so intense that flames reached a height of 25 to 30 feet. The flames were dark black indicating high plastic content in it and it was releasing toxic fumes.”

Deore recalled that when he reached the spot, he saw the fire brigade trying to extinguish the fire, which could not be doused even at 5 pm.

Sunil Ingole, Fire Officer of Hinjawadi, said, “It took 22 to 25,000 litres of water to extinguish the fire. It was a garbage fire and contained plastic, liquor bottles, vehicle mats and foam. The fire was very intense.”

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