Maya was a worried woman when GHMC workers set fire to a garbage heap near her house in Anand Nagar . Her husband was allergic to dust and smoke and she was naturally concerned over the effect it might have on his health.

“GHMC sweepers lit fire near the garbage bin in front of Zilla Parishad building. We stay two buildings away and there was a lot of smoke and dust ,” Ms. Maya says. She finally had to call up the GHMC helpline number before the fire was stopped.

Complaints on garbage burning in residential localities have been pouring in from different parts of the city . Locals accuse GHMC workers of setting fire to papers, dried up leaves and other desiccated waste leaving behind billowing smoke, much to their discomfort.

“There was heavy smoke and it was discomforting having to put up with it after it entered our house,” says Tirumala Kumar who resides in Kondapur. He says a huge fire was first lit up the other day that burnt for almost a whole day.

“When I returned home in the evening, a shopkeeper near my house was having a difficult time with all that smoke.” “From what my security told me, waste from the nearby Alluri Meadows was brought outside in a GHMC truck and set on fire by the GHMC workers,” Mr. Kumar says. And then again, there was another fire last Monday. Peeved this time, he shot some photographs for reference before lodging complaints (via email and helpline number) with the GHMC. Luckily, for him the officials responded dousing the smoke with water.

Not so lucky was another resident of West Marredpally who was woken up early morning to the strong malodour of burning animal flesh. “There is an open area beside Jubilee Bus Station where the entrails of pigs are burnt especially during weekends… The smoke comes straight towards our locality,” he grumbles. The problem has been existing for a year now, he says.

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