Wednesday, February 15, 2012

All-party panel to monitor waste management

Staff Reporter

Immediate challenge is to shift the accumulated garbage from the Lalur dumping yard: Mayor

Thrissur: An all-party meeting held here on Wednesday formed a monitoring committee to assist the Thrissur Corporation in tackling the waste management issue in the city.
The committee, with members from various political parties, will help the civic body in reaching a political consensus on issues including identification of suitable location for shifting the accumulated garbage in Lalur dumping yard.
Mayor I.P. Paul called the all-party meeting as the Lalur Malineekarana Viruddha Samara Samithy's hunger strike completed two days on Wednesday.
The on-going agitation of Lalur residents has had a catastrophic effect on city life. Garbage disposal from the city has been affected for the past 23 days as Samara Samithy activists blocked vehicles transporting garbage to the dumping yard following a week-long fire at the trenching ground.
Addressing the meeting, the Mayor said decentralisation of garbage treatment was the policy of the corporation.
“The problem in identifying suitable locations for decentralised plants is scuttling the corporation's effort to find a solution to the garbage issue.”
The immediate challenge before the corporation was to shift the accumulated garbage from the Lalur dumping yard, the Mayor said.
A high-level meting convened by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy in November last had also directed the corporation to remove it as early as possible.
Though the civic body identified an abandoned quarry at Thonippara, near Ramavarmapuram, for dumping the waste, the local resident had raised objection against the move.
“Finding a solution is impossible without political consensus,” Mr. Paul said.
Therambil Ramakrishnan, MLA, said that the city corporation should be able to take the residents of Thonippara into confidence before dumping the waste in the area.
CPI(M) State committee member Baby John alleged that there was a mafia involved in the whole process of waste management.
He called for forming a public forum with social, political and religious institutions with a ‘Clean Thrissur' mission.
Former Revenue Minister K.P. Rajendran asked the civic body about the progress of the Lalur Model Project for Solid Waste Management, which was approved by the previous LDF Government.
He also suggested conducting an environmental assessment study before dumping the accumulated garbage in any area.
BJP district president B. Gopalakrishnan insisted that the corporation should distribute bio-gas plants to households free of cost.
CPI district secretary C.N. Jayadevan sought a local-level political consensus for setting up decentralised treatment plants.
C.S. Sreenivasan, Corporation Standing Committee (Health) Chairman said the corporation had already taken measures to reduce garbage dumped at Lalur.
“The 70-odd hotels have been asked to set up their own waste treatment system. Notices have been issued to 19 marriage halls too,” he said.
The monitoring panel will meet on Thursday to identify locations for shifting the garbage from Lalur.
Meanwhile, the Lalur Malineekarana Viruddha Samara Samithy has rejected the corporation's request to withdraw the hunger strike.
Samara Samithy leader T.K. Vasu said it would continue the agitation until the garbage has been removed from Lalur.