Residents drag Palike to court over dumping of waste

Last Updated 19 May 2013, 18:42 IST

Kamakshipalya residents have dragged the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and the State government to court over the gradual turning of the playground opposite Theresa Public School, into a dumping ground for trash.

No longer able to bear the terrible stench emanating from the playground and open garbage pits in and around Kamakshipalya, six residents of the area have filed the first ever civil suit against the Palike and Karnataka government on May 17. Their primary reason, they said, is to force the authorities to take necessary steps to remove the garbage, which they said, poses a grave threat to hygiene.

“A fair is held in the playground every two months and the garbage left behind from the fair always remains unattended,” said B Mukhnaram, one of the complainants. “Due to the presence of the trash, many people have fallen ill, and despite innumerable complaints, there has been no favourable response from the authorities — forcing us to file the plaint.”

According to Section 266 of the Karnataka Municipal Corporations (KMC) Act, 1976, the BBMP is responsible for the maintenance of all public streets and may make all improvements necessary or expedient for public safety or convenience. “In this case, the provision has been completely violated as the roads and garbage are left unattended for more than a week — which has become a major issue of public concern and safety,” the plaint said.

Another complainant, Ashok, told Deccan Herald, that he was compelled to be a party to the filing of the case against the government after BBMP lorries began to continuously unload garbage in open ground across from his store on Kamakshipalya Main Road.

“The dumping has been taking place for more than six months now,” he said. “But my complaints to the corporator and other BBMP officials have resulted in no action.

Meanwhile, as the mounds of trash grew, so did the menace of mosquitos and stray dogs. The chances of contracting diseases such as malaria, chikungunya and dengue have increased exponentially — causing a terrible nuisance to everyone in the area.”

BBMP officials, who are aware of the civil suit, are planning to take appropriate steps only after discussing the issue with BBMP Commissioner Siddaiah.

“We have heard about the Kamakshipalya civil suit case, but we are yet to take a look at the nature of the plaint,” said a BBMP official from the Legal Cell, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “We will be handing over the plaint copy to the BBMP commissioner very soon before deciding.”

The case, filed at the Bangalore City Civil Court, will be heard on May 20. While the plaint has been filed by the advocate on record, Gopala Krishna, on the behalf of the aggrieved parties of Kamakshipalya, four students of NUJS (Kolkata) — Nikhil Sawlani, Joachim Saldanha, Devaang Agarwalla and Abin Francis, and one student from Amity Law School, Pawan Shyam, were responsible for drafting the complaint.

Sawlani, who has been in the City for two weeks as part of an internship programme, said he helped draft the complaint after being stunned to see heaps of garbage left unattended near commercial and residential complexes.

“We took more than 25 pictures of the garbage in the area and attached them to the draft,” he said. 

(Published 19 May 2013, 18:40 IST)

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