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Landfill emerges as an election issue

Written By Gopal Krishna on Monday, November 17, 2008 | 10:42 AM

In his election campaign for the upcoming Assembly elections, Ramsingh alias Netaji, former MLA, from Badarpur assembly constituency, Delhi is promising that he would not allow the construction of landfill at Jaithpur at any cost. In Molarband, landfill is the biggest issue because at Tajpur hills in this region a 30 acre land has been allocated for the dumping of national capital's garbage. He says, if he becomes the MLA, he would get the landfill removed through any sort of agitation. Ramsingh is a candidate from Bahujan Samaj Party.

The capacity of its present landfill sites at Ghazipur in east Delhi, Bhalswa-Jehangirpuri in north Delhi and Okhla in south Delhi have long been exhausted.

Municipal Corporation Delhi (MCD) has identified three new sanitary landfill sites in 2000 at Jaithpur, Narela-Bawana Road and Bhatti Mines.

Work is being carried out at the Jaithpur landfill site since 2004 while work has also begun at the Narela-Bawana and a case is going on in the Supreme Court with relation to the Bhatti mines site.

MCD is commissioning new sanitary landfills at Jaithpur, Narela Bawana Road and Bhatti Mines on ‘Design, build and operate’ basis. MCD is working on the closure of existing three landfills and development of restoration projects.

MCD's proposal to build a landfill at Bhatti Mines ignores that there is risk of contamination of water resources from leachate emissions. Also it lies in the vicinity of sensitive locations like Asola Wild Life sanctuary and two villages, Sanjay Nagr and Balbir Nagar.

Earlier a survey by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) done in 2007 found that compared to Delhi, which produces 5,900 metric tonnes per day (mtd), cities like Mumbai with 8,000 mtd, Kolkata with 3,000 mtd and Chennai with 3,500 mtd have better total waste efficiency.

The survey noted that only one per cent of those engaged in solid waste management in Delhi were found to be skilled, out of a battery of 52,000 workforce, which is the highest among the metros. With the highest population size of 1.50 crore, Delhi, has the highest per capital expenditure on solid waste management (Rs 431) followed by Mumbai (Rs 428), Jaipur (Rs 301), Chennai (Rs 295) and Ludhiana (Rs 258), according to an agency report.

Nagpur, Nasik and Bangalore claim a 100 per cent collection efficiency in household collection of waste, while Surat and Hyderabad have shown an efficiency of 80 per cent and 75 per cent, respectively.
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