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Stink city: Trash piles up in Margao as collection stops

Stink city: Trash piles up in Margao as collection stops

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19 Jun 2019 No comment 22 hits

MARGAO: Stench from overflowing garbage bins pervaded the air in Margao on Tuesday as garbage trucks were prevented from being offloaded at Sonsoddo by Fomento, the concessionaire of the solid waste management plant, for the second consecutive day. As the crisis plunged deeper, Margao Muncipal Council (MMC) was found grappling for solutions.
Fomento has refused to accept incoming garbage into Sonsoddo until the “reject” accumulated in the plant are disposed by the municipality. Fomento and the MMC were headed for a collision course as the civic body, upon the instructions of the deputy chief minister, Vijai Sardesai, was preparing to file a police complaint against Fomento for obstructing its garbage management exercise.
“They are obstructing our work of clearing the rejects piled up inside the plant,” chief officer of MMC Siddhivinayak Naik told REPORTERS. “On one hand, they are demanding that we cart away the rejects to make space for incoming waste, and on the other, they are preventing us from lifting the waste by shutting the gates of the plant by 6pm. We had made all arrangements to remove the waste from inside the plant by engaging men and machinery through the night.”
While nearly 1,000 tonnes of reject lies inside the plant, sources said MMC managed to clear around 70 tonnes of waste on Tuesday. “That’s not enough free space to allow daily incoming waste into the plant. The entire volume of reject needs to be moved out before any more waste can be treated,” said Sudin Raiturkar of Fomento, who has been monitoring the situation at Sonsoddo. Sources said that going by rough estimates, it will take a few more days for MMC to clear the plant of all the reject. The MMC, with no other place to dump the reject,has found itself in a piquant situation.
Sources said that the recent fire at the Sonsoddo garbage dump led to the current crisis. While the reject from the plant would eventually find its way into the old garbage dump, protests by locals led to Fomento dumping the reject inside the plant until there was no enough space to handle incoming garbage. That was when Fomento blocked entry to MMC’s garbage trucks on Monday.
Sardesai, who visited Sonsoddo on Tuesday morning, said that he would ensure that things fall in place soon. He blamed both MMC and Fomento for taking a “bureaucratic approach” to the issue. “Garbage is rotting on the streets, and MMC and Fomento are playing volleyball throwing the ball in each others’ courts. They need to have a hands-on approach. I am not going to tolerate garbage rotting on the streets in my constituency (Fatorda),” Sardesai said.
MMC has now begun scouting for open plots of land to be used for segregation of mixed waste before moving it to Sonsoddo. While it has identified a place in Fatorda, councillors from Curtorim and Margao wards have been asked to identify places for the purpose, sources said.
“People have demanded that only segregated waste should come to Sonsoddo,” Sardesai said. “Fomento is also demanding segregated waste. I am also of the same view. But the question is where do we segregate mixed waste. There are black spots in Margao, Cutorim and Fatorda where mixed waste is dumped, which goes to Sonsoddo. So let the MLAs from Margao and Curtorim identify and give lands for segregation just as I have done in Fatorda.”

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