Pune: Rajya Sabha MP Vandana Chavan has demanded that Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) should follow the order issued by Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) and immediately process the leachate generated from the waste and ensure the safety of the polluted water reservoirs in Hadapsar area.
Chavan has written a letter to Pune Municipal Commissioner Vikram Kumar in this regard. In the letter, Chavan has said that mixed waste is being dumped by the PMC in the biomining project at the waste depot at Uruli-Phursungi. As a result, water resources in the area are getting polluted, creating health problems for citizens residing in the areas.
MPCB has also sent a letter to PMC in this regard and ordered to take immediate measures. It has warned of punitive action if PMC fails to take corrective action. Villagers of Hadapsar, Uruli and Phursungi areas have expressed their displeasure over the delay by the PMC in this regard. Despite repeated follow-ups by many NGOs and activists, the top officials in the civic administration have given vague answers without taking any concrete action. Therefore, the issue has aggravated, Chavan has stated.
According to the Solid Waste Act 2016, it is mandatory for the PMC to sort the waste while collecting it. Only then must the sorted waste be transported to the processing plants. However, the PMC is currently dumping the mixed waste at the bio-mining plant at Uruli-Phursungi. It is a nuisance to the residents of the area.
Also, the leachate generated from the waste should be filled in a tanker by the PMC and taken to the nearest wastewater treatment plant for further processing. But even that is being ignored by the PMC. Bad odour has spread in Uruli and Phursungi areas. This has also increased the infestation of mosquitoes.
PMC's negligence during times of epidemics like COVID-19 is causing illness amongst the residents of the area. Taking note of this, the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board has sent a notice to PMC on 19th August. It has been ordered not to dump the mixed waste in the bio-mining plant. The Pollution Control Board has also warned of punitive action if the PM fails to implement the order and has asked the civic body to submit a report on the measures taken by them within three days.
If the residents of the area agitate and demand health facilities, the municipal corporation is filing cases against them. This is very wrong. Cases should not be filed against the protesters to cover up the inefficiencies of PMC officials. MP Chavan has also demanded that their demands should be considered sympathetically.