The Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) has accused the Ulhasnagar Central Hospital of throwing its bio-waste haphazardly. While the MPCB issued a show-cause notice against the hospital, they are still mulling what to do with their waste.
According to Satyajit Burman, one of the complainants against the hospital’s lack of proper sanitation, the hospital has been flouting all norms of treating bio-waste. “There are used syringes, cotton swabs and other waste lying on the ground in the hospital premises. The dustbins are not properly placed, and not used as they should be. We had even found that the hospital has been selling its plastic waste to a private scrap dealer, something they are not allowed to,” Burman said.
On July 13, the MPCB had issued a show-cause notice to the Central Hospital on various issues. The notice read, “after examining all the reports and records available with this office, I have come to the conclusion that you are knowingly and willfully violating the provisions of Bio-Medical Waste Management Rules, 2016, Air (P&CP) 1961 and Water (P&CP) Act, 1974.”
While the MPCB officials had asked for a reply from the hospital within ten days, the Regional Officer DB Patil said that they had not received any response from the MPCB. “They haven’t responded within the specified time period. We will discuss with the board and initiate some action against them, Patil said.
However, Burman visited the hospital on July 27, along with a team of MPCB officials. “Despite the show-cause notice, they are flouting all rules. The bio-waste like used syringes, needles and cotton pieces are still strewn around the hospital. We have already asked the MPCB officers to take strict action,” he said.
While the MPCB officials refused to comment about the latest visit, they said that they were going to put forth all matters in front of the board.
The hospital civil surgeon Shashikant Shinde said, “We had received a show cause notice, after which I have taken certain measures to check the waste issues. We have already started proper training facility for the cleaning staff, and the junior staff members. We are ensuring that the dustbins are marked and used properly and the MPCB shall ensure that the waste is taken away from here in a timely manner. We have already responded to them. The hospital is clean now,” he said.
The residents of Ulhasnagar, however, claim nothing has changed. “They keep it clean for a few days and then eventually the needles and medical waste start showing up at unexpected places. I wear my footwear everywhere, to avoid contamination,” said Neha Kannojia, a resident of Ulhasnagar, whose relative was admitted to the hospital.