Green belt near Nirvana Country, Gurugram, turns dumping spot
I am a resident of Nirvana Country – Espace, which is considered as one of the most upmarket addresses in Gurugram.
I take pride in saying that it is a beautiful settlement with spirited people. Even though there are more than 5,000 people living here, our waste management is exemplary as the waste is properly segregated and we have a big compost unit running inside.
The problem is we are located right next to the Golf Course Extension Road (GCER), which is seeing extensive construction with big builders like Emaar, M3M and Ireo launching projects here.
Even though we have managed to keep our premises clean, we are losing the battle to rampant air, water and soil pollution that is slowly but steadily killing us all.
Barely three months after I had shifted to my new house in May 2018, which is located right on the boundary of Nirvana Country, I had a cancer scare as a golf ball-size lump appeared in my throat. The main reason for that was pollution I was suddenly exposed to while doing pranayama on my roof top. The land next to my house has been illegally used as a dumping ground for garbage and construction waste for the past eight years.
In fact, the entire GCER has turned into a big dump yard and every passerby is a witness to the plight.
Tractor trolleys full of construction debris and solid municipal waste dump their loads anywhere they find a vacant land on GCER because:
There is no policing and hardly any checking of these vehicles
The road shoulders aren’t developed allowing easy access to these vehicles
There are no government-designated dumping areas in the vicinity
The big builders construct makeshift shanties or labour colonies near construction sites, which have no waste disposal system. There are many such shanties along GCER, where no collection of waste ever happens. The waste is either burned or buried under the ground.
Is anyone bothered about the leachate that is reaching our water table? These shanties need to be properly managed by the builder. They should have proper waste and sewage disposing systems.
Another big concern is the open transport of building material in trolleys and trucks. All these harmful particles get mixed with the wind and enter our blood.
Then there is the problem of burning the trash. Even though there are enough laws prohibiting such activities, there is hardly any interest from authorities to check the implementation of these laws.
Our green belt is worth its value in gold. That’s the only area where we can plant some trees which can give life to our children. There is a reason they are called the lungs of the city. Because they will ensure that we are breathing tomorrow, not our manicured lawns and posh condos in high rises.
The authorities need to wake up and do something about the mess. We want more trees. We want an effective waste management system. We want someone to be accountable for maintaining GCER. Someone whom we can contact and who will listen to our voices.