A fire was reported in a garbage dump in front of Jyoti Super Village, a housing condominium in Raj Nagar Extension, in the wee hours of Monday. Though locals managed to douse the flames on their own, the pattern the latest fire followed is worrisome for many.
Virendra Indoliya, a resident of Raj Nagar Extension, could be able to record the incident as he chanced upon spotting the fire while passing by the site en route to a neighbourhood dairy which he visits every morning to buy milk. He said the fire at the site had become a routine affair.
“The fire,” he explained, “did not break out on its own, but someone has set a garbage pile on fire. Every 10-15 days, the garbage dump overflows with mostly accumulated construction waste prompting people to set it on fire. They find the method easy to clear the debris."
The site in question has more than a dozen housing society in its vicinity. Frequent garbage burning has deteriorated the air quality in the surroundings. Forced to inhale toxic fumes emanating from the garbage dump, people living in the area have started complaining of health complications.
"Building material, when burnt, emanates harmful emissions. This is adversely affecting the health of children and senior citizens living in the neighbourhood. The impact of the fumes varies from person to person, but affects all. In some, it causes respiratory problems while in others, it affects the overall health,” said Virendra Indoliya.
Vikrant Sharma, an environment activist living in the area, claimed that there were dozens of similar sites in Raj Nagar Extension where garage burning takes place. "Neither administration nor law enforcement agencies are bothered about this situation," he lamented.
This is happening at a time when the city is going through the worst pollution and ranked high among the most polluted cities in the country.
Meanwhile, various task forces are deployed by civil authorities and the Pollution Control Board to check garbage burning and other violations of the Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) launched by Supreme Court constituted Environment Pollution Control Authority. The GRAP, launched to combat severe air pollution in Delhi NCR, will remain in force till November 15.
CitySpidey checked with the regional office of the Pollution Control Board and Sihani Gate police station to ascertain if any complaint regarding the current incident or previous incidents is registered. Police officials denied having received any formal complaint. They, however, informed that fire brigade was called several times in the past to douse flames at many an unauthorised garbage dump in Raj Nagar Extension.
Office of Pollution Control Board assured of an investigation into the matter.