Kanakamma, her sister, and a relative are feared buried at Jawaharnagar dump yard
Seven-year-old Ashwini and her four-year-old brother Ajay don't know anything about the searches going on at Jawaharnagar for past three days. All that they know is they are missing their mother, Kanakamma, and there is no one to look after them like she did. Brought by their close relatives to the stinking dumping yard, the tiny tots stand on a side hoping their beloved mother would turn up.
But, their father Kanakaiah is slowly losing hope of finding her alive. “She would have come home if she was alive or shouted for help,” the labourer said. Kanakamma, her younger sister, Andalu and their close relative, Sattemma, are feared buried alive in the mounds of garbage at the yard having gone there to collect waste.
The three women in their mid to late 30s are married and each has two children. Families of the two sisters from Gandamall in Nalgonda and the third woman from Palmakunta of same district migrated to the city in search of livelihood a few years ago. All were living in huts at Yellareddyguda of Kushaiguda and working as labourers.
If frequent ‘bandhs' due to recent stirs deprived them of work, personal problems worsened their lives. Kanakaiah could not work for two months having undergone surgery for appendicitis. Sattemma's husband, Venkataiah, has been confined to hut for past 3 smonths after his leg fractured in an accidental fall. Andalu's husband Narsimhulu frequently falls sick. “In these circumstances, sifting the yard for scrap and selling it to brokers was the only option for us. Though risky and dirty, this gives us at least one meal a day,” their relatives said. The search operation is turning out to be a difficult task for the authorities as they have to sift through hundreds of tonnes of garbage. The stench makes it difficult event to stand for a few minutes. Poisonous gases emanate from the garbage mounds, which are spread over 300 acres. The garbage catches fire here and there and thick plumes of smoke can be seen billowing out.
Relatives allege that the officials were searching at the places they identified.