India

Garbage and Open Dumping Grounds Risk Lives: Does Anymore Care?

Photo By Zainab Mahfooz

Zainab Mahfooz for BeyondHeadlines

Sunita Narayan in a new column of Down to Earth wrote that in the era of 1980 Europe and America used to load garbage and waste of their country in aeroplanes and dump it into poor countries of Africa which is similar to what is now happening in India. People over here are doing exactly the same by disposing of their household wastes in front of slums.

According to a report from India Today around 4000 tonnes of construction waste is generated in Delhi every day which is being dumped into already polluted Yamuna, choking it further.

About 53,000 cubic metres of solid waste is deposited in the western Yamuna Bank – which includes the area covering Nizamuddin and Batla House, which yet needs to be cleaned.

Five municipal corporations, comprising over 280 wards generate approx 14000 tonnes per day of solid waste. Out of which approx 4,600 tonnes per day is disposed of in three dumping sites of Delhi- Okhla, Bhalswa and Ghazipur.

Photo By Zainab Mahfooz

If we look upon Okhla, which is mostly famous because of central university Jamia Millia Islamia and is counted as one of the most crowded areas of Delhi has several dumping areas spread over a wide range of land.

Open dumping grounds in the middle of the domestic area is highly not acceptable. Areas like Batla House and Abul Fazal have open dumping grounds over a vast area, further making it impossible for the residents to live. Because of all these waste disposed of in open, residents are facing serious health problems. 

As the dumping ground in Batla House is connected to the backside of Yamuna and thus contaminating its water which is supplied to 85% of houses as drinking water. People living in slums around these dumping ground are living a miserable life because all these garbage contains toxic gases like methane with a very high risk of catching fire.

Similar is the case with dumping grounds of Abul Fazal which is apparently diagonal to a hospital ‘Al Shifa’ thus increasing the risk of patients being infected. Municipal Corporation chooses to ignore the crisis of these areas and restrains themselves from taking any action towards such an important problem of the masses.

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