Manjalamkuzhi Ali, Minister for Urban Affairs, will convene a meeting in Thiruvananthapuram on Tuesday at 3 p.m. to amicably settle the row over the dumping of waste at Brahmapuram.
V.P. Sajeendran, local legislator; officials of the Kochi Corporation, which owns and operates the solid waste treatment plant, and representatives of Vadavukode-Puthencruz panchayat, where the plant is located, will attend the meeting.
A fire that broke out at the plastic waste dumping yard on Friday had ignited fiery protests against dumping of solid waste at the plant site.
The protest turned violent on Monday when vehicles carrying refuse from the city reached Brahmapuram. Protesters picketed the vehicles before the police dispersed them. Later, when lorries moved in convoy to the plant, some miscreants threw stones at the vehicles. The windshields of three vehicles were shattered, said Ambalamedu police.
Meanwhile, Corporation authorities said the collection and transportation of waste from the city resumed on Monday. Kochi Mayor Tony Chammany said 11 lorries transported garbage to the plant site.
He said the Corporation was awaiting funds from the Suchitwa Mission for scientifically capping (packing waste in a specially designed pit) the plastic waste accumulated at the site. The civic body had earlier spent Rs.2.45 crore, released by the Mission, for scientific capping waste.
“The refuse will be processed without any delay using the funds,” Mr. Chammany said.
Rama Saju, chairperson of Vadavukode-Puthencruz panchayat, said the local body would stick to its stand on closing down the plant.
Ms. Saju said processing of biodegradable waste at the plant was being carried out in a satisfactory manner. She, however, said the Corporation could not process non-biodegradable plastic refuse piled up at the site.
She said, the cold response of the Kochi Corporation to the stop memo issued by the panchayat prompted them to toughen their stand. Though the panchayat vice-president personally handed over the stop memo to the Mayor, the Corporation officials did not respond to it, she said.
“The panchayat cannot be taken for granted on such a serious issue,” said Ms. Saju.
The panchayat was even contemplating buying bio-manure from the plant. It had always adopted a positive approach to the needs of the Kochi Corporation. The latest developments have forced the panchayat to act tough, she said.