The BMC has issued a notice to the contractor company managing Deonar dumping ground to cough up the amount spent on firefighting operations. In turn, the company has asked the civic body to pay the Rs 36 crore it has pending.

A fire had engulfed Deonar dumping ground recently with its smoke spreading over to far suburbs. This led to uproar from citizens and activists who demanded the closure of the ground. The contract of the company managing affairs at the ground had ended on January 30 and BMC has taken over operations since then.

On January 22 and 30, the contractor had sent a notice to the BMC asking for Rs 36 crore for premature termination of agreement. In turn, the BMC has now sent them a notice stating that it should pay them for the expenses incurred while dousing the fire. This, because the fire broke out on the 27th while the contractor was still in control.

The matter was discussed in the standing committee on Wednesday. "Of course the contractor is responsible. He should reimburse the BMC. Instead he is threatening legal action if we don't pay his dues," said Devendra Amberkar, leader of opposition.

The BMC is now mulling its options.