The civic body has replied to a letter by former cricketer and Rajya Sabha MP Sachin Tendulkar, who had asked for long-term solutions to improve the quality of life of people living around the Deonar dumping ground. In the response sent on Friday, Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta has listed the measures already implemented to tackle the problem and those that are in the pipeline.
Mehta has also asked Tendulkar to help the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation create awareness about waste segregation and disposal.
The letter gives a status of the dumping grounds in Deonar, Mulund, Kanjurmarg as well as the newly acquired ones at Taloja and Airoli.
Mehta has said the BMC ‘will ensure that all the waste going to these two dumping yards will be scientifically treated’. The civic chief also mentions plans to dump debris in the Deonar dumping ground.
The letter states that currently, there are around 32 collection centres for dry waste and 35 new ones are expected to come up soon.
Experts in the field of solid waste management will work with the BMC to create awareness about the segregation of waste, it adds.
On Shivaji Nagar, the is a detailed list of the amenities provided, including community toilets, schools as well as open grounds. The letter states that in the year 2015-16, Rs 1755 lakh was spent for the development of the area.
Tendulkar had written to the municipal commissioner, pointing out the hardships caused to residents of areas around the dumping ground and breathing problems faced by the six lakh people living in Shivaji Nagar.
In his letter, Tendulkar had mentioned the limited access to sanitation, potable water supply, proper drainage, health facilities, education beyond seventh grade and banking services, which ‘adds to the social and financial exclusion of these people’.
Meanwhile, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member of parliament Kirit Somaiya, along with BJP corporator Manoj Kotak, met with Mehta and demanded that the plot acquired at Airoli not be used as a dumping ground.
“We cannot allow any additional dumping ground in the eastern suburbs and garbage disposal has to be a decentralised process,” said Somaiya. Voicing similar concerns, Kotak said, “The people in the eastern suburbs have been suffering for the last 25-30 years since all three dumping grounds are located in the area. The process should be decentralised and that way the BMC will save on a lot of the cost on transportation as well.”