Garbage burning continues unabated in many areas in spite of several complaints to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike. But who is burning it and where is it coming from, are questions for which even BBMP does not seem to have answers, even after considerable sleuthing for weeks.
Sarfaraz Khan, Joint Commissioner, Solid Waste Management, BBMP, said despite several attempts to deploy Prahaari vehicles to detect who was dumping garbage, there had been little results. “There is a pattern to these garbage fires in Mahadevapura Zone. Most of them are being reported from 100-plus acre parcels of land whose titles are not clear, and the plots do not have compound wall as well, making it difficult for the police,” he said.
Mr. Khan said it had come to their notice that local civic officials and the police had connived with illegal garbage contractors and were allowing them to dump and burn garbage, for a commission per truck. “Some of these areas have illegal settlements, and people living there are into waste collection. They burn the rejects, usually plastic, leading to dense smoke and severe pollution,” he said.
BBMP Commissioner N. Manjunath Prasad has now written to city Police Commissioner N.S. Megharikh on the issue of these illegal settlements.
BBMP officials also suspect that some of the large apartments in the area are not giving their waste to empanelled vendors for bulk generators, a space taken over by illegal contractors who are burning garbage. Mr. Khan said an audit of all empanelled vendors was taken up and most of them produced receipts of destinations to where waste was taken to. This leaves us with the conclusion that illegal contractors were operating in the Mahadevapura zone, which needs to be tackled.