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Locals fear dengue outbreak as nullah turns into a cesspool

Residents of Sasane Nagar in Hadapsar have lashed out at the civic authorities for their lackadaisical approach in putting an end to dumping of waste in a nearby canal which, according to them, has become a cesspit for mosquitoes.


Resdients have made several complaints to the PMC regarding the filthy ravine at Sasane Nagar, which emanates a foul smell all the time. Pic/Sachin Thakare

Locals complained that apart from the stench emanating from the canal due to rotting garbage, they were worried that it could lead to an outbreak of dengue in the area. Though the locals are equally responsible for polluting the nullah dumping domestic waste and nirmalya they want the civic body to either clean the nullah on a regular or impose heavy fines on those polluting it.

Expressing her helplessness, local corporator and former mayor Vaishali Bankar said, “The nullah is surrounded by a slum area and most of its dwellers dump their garbage in it. We had organised an awareness campaign in the slum a week ago, but cleaning the nullah is impossible without people’s support.”

Residents speak
Refusing to accept reasons given by Banker, residents claimed the corporators were only interested in developing those areas of Hadapsar that are already developed due to the presence of IT industries. “The foul smell emanating from the nullah has made our lives miserable.

While developmental works are being done in posh areas like Magarpatta, areas like Sasane Nagar are always ignored by the civic authorities,” said Prashant Bogum, a local. “Despite repeated complaints, the PMC hasn’t done anything till date.”

Another Sasane Nagar resident Ratan Malil said, “With the nullah becoming a mosquito breeding hotspot, locals are living in a constant fear of contracting vector-borne diseases like dengue. The Pune Municipal Corporation must impose heavy fines on those dumping garbage in the nullah.

Officialspeak
When contacted Hadapsar Ward Officer Sanjay Gawade said even after deploying ghanta gadi (garbage vehicle) for almost 24 hours in Sasane Nagar, locals still dump waste in the nullah. “To ensure people exhibited civic sense, a proposal of increasing the fine amount for throwing garbage in the public place was sent to the General Body some six months ago. But it has been with the GB ever since. However, on the temporary basis, we have installed safety lids on various nullahs across the city,” said Gawade.

451
Number of people who tested positive for dengue since January 

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