Irked with stench from garbage unit, residents cry for permanent solution

Residents of Uday Baug forced to keep windows closed to keep out smell of rotting garbage from recycling unit nearby

If you visit Forum Condominium residential society at Uday Baug, don't be surprised to find windows and verandas in the complexes closed. Residents are resorting to this measure to avoid the strong odour that emanates from the garbage processing and recycling unit near Ramtekdi.

No option: The Forum Condominium residential society at Uday Baug,
where people are forced to keep their windows closed

Now, after the monsoon, the stench has become even more troublesome. The unit established by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) near the Ramtekdi industrial area a year ago processes more than 100 tonnes of dry and wet garbage and burns it everyday, because of which a strong stench pervades the air.

Affected areas
After hounding the residents of Uday Baug and neighbouring areas such as Kavade Road, Sopanbaug and even Mundhwa Road for nearly a year, the stench had reduced during the monsoon. Now, a month after the rains, the stench has come back to trouble the residents. Residents say that because of the change in weather and wind direction after the rains, the smell has simply become stronger and is constant, unlike before.

"The smell of rotting garbage becomes so strong that most of the time we have to keep our windows and doors closed throughout the day and night. This is a health hazard. It's hard to imagine how we endure the smell while eating," said Anuradha Sawhney, a resident of the locality. 

Temporary action
There are more than 80 residents in the adjoining areas, including Champa Ratna society, who are at the receiving end of this foul smell. Residents, who have been demanding a permanent and alternative solution for waste processing, say that months ago when they had agitated in front of the PMC office, the officials took immediate action by spraying composting powder and air purifiers, which considerably reduced the smell, but the authorities stopped doing it after a few days.

"At times the garbage is not removed for days and the civic authority is aware of that. We even approached the police to register a complaint, but to no avail. We have decided to meet the Municipal Commissioner to inform him that we don't pay Rs 9,000 as property tax every month for all this," said Jagdish Prem, chairman of Forum

The other side
PMC officials say the stench results from the moisture in the garbage that usually increases after the rains. "We have been receiving lot of complaints since the past two weeks. We have planned to spray more amounts of composting powder and other chemicals to lessen the odour and from next week I'll personally look into it," said S A Gawde, ward officer, PMC Solid Waste Management department. 

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