Madurai

₹98-lakh garbage segregating machinery left to rust

Parts of a central processing unit meant to segregate garbage has been left to rust by the Virudhunagar municipality.

Parts of a central processing unit meant to segregate garbage has been left to rust by the Virudhunagar municipality.   | Photo Credit: G_Moorthy

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Virudhunagar Municipal Commissioner says there is a design flaw

For over two years, a central processing unit procured by Virudhunagar Municipality for processing garbage before converting the organic waste into bio-manure, has been left to rust.

The cash-strapped municipality has already spent ₹98 lakh on the machinery, but is yet to erect it. “We wonder why the officials are so lethargic in implementing a project that will go a long way in keeping the town clean,” said Virudhunagar Nagar Nala Amaippu (Virudhunagr Town Welfare Organisation) functionary, S. M. Rathinavel.

The machinery consisting of two cylindrical trommel screens and other parts are lying on the municipal underground drainage pumping station near the dump yard.

The machinery has lost its sheen, the paint has faded and it has begun to rust, he complained. One of the trommel is almost hidden under the growth of a wild plant.

“This machinery should have been installed way back so that the garbage collected daily by the municipal workers is separated into organic and inorganic waste. The organic waste thus separated can be used at the compost pits to manufacture bio-fertiliser. The fertiliser could be sold and municipality could generate income through it,” another functionary of the Amaippu, Kannan Nagarajan, said.

Dr. Rathinavel said that Virudhunagar municipality has a biggest compost yard in over 110 acres. Mounds of garbage dumped are set on fire by municipal employees themselves.

The smoke that emanates from the waste causes irritation and suffocation among residents of Muthuramanpatti, including Allampatti and Aathumedu.

A reply from the municipality to a Right to Information petition revealed that the local body has already spent ₹3.37 lakh on setting up a shed. Besides, ₹8 lakh has been spent to form a green fence (planting of saplings).

“But, there are only very few trees in the yard which only raises suspicion over the quality of work being taken up. Besides, the shed has only be constructed in half the portion and it is incomplete,” Dr. Rathinavelu said. The green paint applied to the compost pits remains fresh after two years revealing that it has never been used, Mr. Kannan complained.

However, Municipal Commissioner S. Parthasarathy, who assumed office four months back, said that the machinery could not be erected due to a design flaw. “I have asked for a change in the design. We hope to make it functional in another one month,” he added.

A coat of fresh paint will make the machinery fit for usage, he added. Mr. Parthasarathy said that the local body has planned to dig a lake at the dumping yard to store water treated from the sewage treatment plant before it is let into the Gowshika river.

“The lake will serve as a stabilising point where in sediments will settle down before treated water is drained into the river. Besides, permanent storage of water will facilitate introduction of boating facility for the town residents,” he added.

However, a municipal official said that the financial position of the municipality was in a bad shape to take up any major work.

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Printable version | Dec 15, 2019 10:22:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/98-lakh-garbage-segregating-machinery-left-to-rust/article28761281.ece

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