By dumping garbage in abandoned quarries on the city’s outskirts, is the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) breaking the law? Moreover, is the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) condoning it?
According to KSPCB Chairperson Vaman Acharya, the board cannot permit dumping of garbage in quarries as it violates the Municipal Solid Waste Management Rules 2000. He said: “Given the garbage crisis in the city, the KSPCB had not objected to BBMP’s proposal to dump waste in quarry pits.”
Apart from seeking permission in general to dump garbage in abandoned quarries, the BBMP has started dumping waste in such pits in S. Bingipura off Electronics City.
Also, in anticipation of the huge quantum of garbage that will be generated in the city through this week, the BBMP has identified alternative sites, apart from S. Bingipura, Lakshmipura and Kalbalu.
However, officials are tight-lipped about the quantum of waste being dumped in these new sites.
“We have sought KSPCB’s permission to dump in quarry pits across the city on a temporary basis. We have also urged the KSPCB to guide the BBMP to set up not just temporary dump yards but also transit points and segregation centres,” Mayor D. Venkatesh Murthy acknowledged. He, however, refused to divulge details, saying that such disclosure could incite communities living in the vicinity of the proposed dumping sites.
Meanwhile, the excess waste the city is expected to generate because of the festivals will be cleared in shifts. Though Ayudha Pooja and Bakrid are public holidays, the BBMP Commissioner has directed all health and solid waste management officials and heads of other departments to report for duty.
“A circular in this regard has been issued and officials have been asked to not take a holiday. This is to ensure that the excess waste is disposed of effectively,” he said. The BBMP had also spoken to some transport companies to arrange for additional vehicles which could be deployed to clear the festival waste.