Protesters stop garbage trucks, lock dump yard

Protesters stop garbage trucks, lock dump yard

Vehement protests against the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike offloading rubbish in the Mavallipura landfill, on Saturday forced the civic agency to divert garbage trucks to other dump yards in the City.

The agitation, which began on Friday following the death of a villager, Muniraju, a few days ago, intensified on Saturday. Demonstrators alleged that 35-year-old Muniraju’s death from kidney failure was caused by the heavily polluting garbage dumped in the Mavallipura landfill.

On Saturday, they locked the gates of the landfill and stopped garbage trucks, demanding a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the next of Muniraju’s kin.
It is said uninterrupted and hyped-up television coverage of Muniraju’s death and the consequent protests had spread dissent among people in the areas surrounding the landfill.

On Friday, villagers near a dump yard in Rajarajeshwari Nagar area pelted trucks ferrying garbage with stones. As a result, the transportation of waste from the City was suspended abruptly for sometime.

The incidents have baffled the Palike engineers who dispose of 3,000 tonnes of garbage generated daily in the City. The worried engineers on Friday met Police Commissioner Jyothiprakash Mirji seeking protection. The top police brass reportedly told them to find a way out through dialogue and assured them protection if the situation went out of hand.

A Palike officer said at least 900 tonnes to 1000 tonnes of garbage could not be cleared because of the protests in the last two days. If the situation persists, the City will turn into a heap of garbage, he said.

He dismissed allegations that health problems in villages surrounding Mavallipura had aggravated. He said that the Palike supplied Cauvery water through tankers, sprayed disinfectants in the affected villages, and held regular medical camps to ensure the safety of the residents.

Srinivas, one of the protesters, said the proposed Waste-to-Energy project would only aggravate the problem instead of offering a solution. He said the Palike should stop it with immediate effect.

However, BBMP chief Engineer (SWD) B V Satish refuted the statement saying the Waste-to-Energy project will not only generate at least 10 MW of power, but also curb pollution.

Mayor holds meeting

Mayor D Venkatesh Murthy on Saturday called a meeting of the members of Dalit Sangharsha Samithi and the Palike’s health department officials, and assured the demonstrators that he would ensure better health services and supply of quality drinking water in Mavallipura. He also promised to organise health camps at regular intervals.
The mayor also assured the protesters that he would shortly visit their village and meet affected persons, if any.

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