Collective petitions L-G

PUDUCHERRY, 27 Oct. 2021: A farmers collective has sought an end to the dumping of solid waste at agricultural sites near the Bahour Sitheri, Uchimedu and Manapet tanks that could jeopardise farmlands and water resources. Photo: Special Arrangement   | Photo Credit: Handout_E_Mail

The Bangaaru Vaickal Neeraadhara Koottamaippu, a farmers and water rights advocacy collective, has petitioned the Lt. Governor seeking an end to the indiscriminate dumping of solid waste by the civic body on agricultural fields and waterbodies in the peri-urban Bahour area.

In a memorandum submitted to the Lt. Governor, with copies marked to Chief Minister, Chief Secretary, National Green Tribunal and others, V. Chandrasekhar, president of the collective, said the illegal and irrational dumping of solid waste near agricultural fields and water channels by the Bahour commune panchayat, if unchecked, would jeopardise the water and land resources in various ways.

The memorandum pointed out that Bahour, which is the rice bowl of Puducherry, is a prime agricultural area and dumping of solid waste near the rice fields and water channels would lead to leaching of hazardous chemicals from the solid waste into the rice fields and waste channels polluting the entire rice crop as well as the water sources of Bahour.

“Especially with monsoon already on, this is a ticking time-bomb and needs to be addressed on a war-footing,” the memorandum said.

The National Green Tribunal has already laid down its orders and the Central Pollution Control authorities have already brought out clear guidelines on the upkeep and maintenance of water systems which the DSTE, Puducherry, and the Pollution Control Board, Puducherry, is also completely aware of.

Against this backdrop, the action of Bahour commune panchayat of dumping solid waste near rice fields, irrigation tanks is completely illegal and needs to be stopped with immediate effect, the collective said.

‘Shift site’

It is to be noted that the Bahour commune panchayat earlier tried to dump the waste on the Uchimedu tank bunds which the local farmers agitated against and stopped.

The memorandum urged the authorities to ensure that the entire waste generated in Bahour is shifted to the Kurumbapet dump yard where there is already a system to process the waste through bio-methanation process as no such systems are present in any of the rural areas as of now.

The dumping of solid waste in Bahour, being an agricultural area and criss-crossed with water channels and rice fields, has to be immediately stopped till such time a proper solid waste processing/resource centre is established and in working condition.

The burning of solid waste should be stopped as the smoke contains carcinogenic pollutants given the fact that Bahour generates huge volumes of medical waste. Waste from Cuddalore district is also dumped along Mullodai road during night, the memorandum said.

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Printable version | Dec 1, 2021 9:21:36 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/collective-petitions-l-g/article37202106.ece

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