December 18, 2021 9:50:33 pm
Senior Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala on Saturday held a symbolic press conference in front of a waste mountain in the Dadumajra dumping ground, during which he trained his gun at the Narendra Modi government at the Centre as well as the BJP-ruled Chandigarh Municipal Corporation.
Surjewala, in the presence of other senior Congress leaders, attacked the BJP stating that the “conspiratorial discrimination, cruel slashing of development budget, criminal indifference and insurmountable taxes” are the only legacies of Modi government and the BJP-ruled Chandigarh Municipal Corporation.
Surjewala said, “India’s ‘City Beautiful’ carved out of the vision and dreams of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru has been converted into a ‘Garbage Mountain City’ by Modi and BJP Government.”
“An insurmountable mountain of over 15 lakh tonnes of garbage in Dadumajra shows to the world what the ‘City Beautiful’ has turned into. The intolerable and poisonous smoke emanating from this mountain is playing havoc with the health of residents of Chandigarh,” he said.
Surjewala said that Chandigarh produces 500 tonnes of solid waste every day, which is nearly 2 lakh tonnes of solid waste every year. While the BJP has erected a 10 lakh tonne garbage mountain in the last five years, not a penny has been spent on garbage processing. “This is telltale criminal negligence. The only bigger garbage mountain of the height of Taj Mahal (73 metres) is in Delhi under the Arvind Kejriwal government (Ghazipur),” he said.
The Congress leader added that the Solid Waste Processing Plant in Dadumajra has been lying shut down under the Modi government and the BJP-ruled Chandigarh civic corporation. The processing of solid waste in Chandigarh now has been left in God’s hands, he added.
Speaking on the overwhelming increase in House Tax, Surjewala said that in the year 2020 the “Tax Assessment Committee” recommended an increase of 20% in house tax. “This has affected 1,50,000 taxpayers of Chandigarh – 1,20,000 in the residential category and 30,000 in the commercial and industrial category. Around Rs.50 crore was already being collected and an additional burden of Rs.15 crore has been imposed on them,” he said.
BJP workers stage protest
A group of BJP workers on Saturday arrived and staged a demonstration near Dadumajra dumping ground while the Congress leaders were addressing their press conference there. A large contingent of police personnel was deployed in the area to maintain law and order, and though the protests remained fairly peaceful, it drew ire from the Congress leaders who claimed that the BJP was trying to stifle the voice of the Opposition in Chandigarh for speaking the truth.
Congress party spokesperson, Rajiv Sharma, later said that Saturday’s protests showed the fascist mindset of the BJP leaders. “Instead of feeling ashamed at failing the people of Chandigarh in the last six years, the BJP is trying to arm-twist the Opposition into silence,” he said.
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