HC sets two-week deadline for status report on B'lore garbage

Present contractors shall carry dry and wet wastes separately

The High Court on Thursday set a deadline of two weeks for the Karnataka government and BBMP to submit a status report on steps taken to tackle the garbage menace in Bangalore.

Hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by city-based advocate G R Mohan, seeking supersession of the BBMP for its failure to act on the garbage disposal issue, the division bench comprising Chief Justice Vikramajit Sen and Justice B V Nagarathna mentioned specific steps to be followed in dealing with garbage disposal.

“The civic body, in coordination with the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB), should identify and come up with a list of at least seven more landfill sites around Bangalore city within 15 days,” the Bench said.

The Chief Justice said wet waste should be collected from households and transported directly to a new landfill at Chikkanagamangala near Sarjapur and dry solid waste should be collected twice a week and transported to Mandur landfill. “The present contractors shall separately carry dry and wet wastes to two different landfills,” he added.

Segregation in 2 months

Justice Sen said segregation and wet waste processing stations shall be made operational in 28 Assembly constituencies within two months.

"We see this as the first step to be followed immediately in each of the 198 wards under BBMP. Ideally, every ward should have three segregation and wet waste processing stations and this exercise should be completed in four months,” he added.

"It is our earnest hope that with these three steps, the problem that citizens are facing shall be eradicated at least to some extent, temporarily," Justice Sen said.

Earlier in the day, during the hearing of the case, which prolonged for more than 90 minutes, Advocate General (AG) S Vijay Shankar said the State government had identified space for landfill in 82 villages around Bangalore and the total estimated cost of the garbage disposal is about Rs 800 crore, for which the chief minister had given his approval.

“However, since the execution of the task involves coordinated efforts of various agencies including the Urban Development Department, BBMP and KSPCB, we need some more time in this regard. As the municipal solid waste subject is also attached to the Central government, we need to take note of the same while executing solid waste related projects,” he said.

The AG said sincere efforts were being made by the State government in tackling the garbage menace and promised that the government would keep the High Court updated on the progress of work.

Petitioner Mohan took exception to the government’s statement that it had got clearance for the landfill sites it had identified near Sarjapur Road and Anekal.

“While the proposed landfill near Sarjapur Road is close to human habitation, the one near Anekal lies along the elephant corridor. The State government should take note of public opinion before going ahead with such projects,” he said.

After hearing the arguments, the bench adjourned the case to December 6 for hearing. On November 20, the division bench had warned it would initiate contempt proceedings if BBMP and KSPCB fail to come up with a plan in two days.

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