Mumbai is grappling with garbage. But, if you have been wondering why there’s so much dirt on your street and road side – we may have the answer
Mumbai is grappling with garbage all around. But, if you have been wondering why there’s so much garbage on your street and road side – we may have the answer.
In a report by The Indian Express, a committee appointed by Additional Municipal Commissioner Vijay Singhal has issued show cause notices to four officials including Deputy Municipal Commissioner Vijay Balamwar. This comes after a probe was initiated on several civic officials from the Solid Waste Management (SWM) department of the BMC for colluding with a garbage compacting contractor. The issue came to light after the contractor approached the Bombay High Court in 2014 alleging that the delay caused by the BMC led to the idling of his equipment, leading to damages worth Rs 35.19 crores. His petition mentioned that many officials were to be blamed for this loss, including, chief engineers, deputy chief engineers and deputy municipal commissioners. He alleged that the incident occurred over a period of time – between 2006 to 2017.
The committee’s probe said that the contractor allegedly processed less garbage than he had claimed. After this finding the civic officials were given seven days to respond, but have not till date. The committee members said that they would send them a reminder notice on Wednesday. In a statement to The Indian Express, Commissioner Vijay Singhal said that he had appointed a two-member committee comprising of the deputy municipal commissioner Chandrasekhar Chore and Narendra Barde. He added that the probe was put into action two weeks ago.
Singhal said, "This is a very serious case and the committee will conduct a detailed inquiry to ascertain certain facts including who provided the notings to the contractor and why was the matter not brought before the senior administration." The probe was started after Civic chief Ajoy Mehta asked Singhal to carry out a detailed investigation and preliminary inquiry into the report submitted by outgoing Additional Municipal Commissioner, Sanjay Deshmukh. His report revealed that many officials from the SWM department had colluded with the contractor appointed to compressing and transferring waste.
His report also mentioned that the monthly average revealed a difference of 40 percent in the quantity of waste received at Mahalaxmi and the quantity actually compressed and disposed of. He also added that the contractor’s bills were cleared based on the volume and the weight of the actual garbage was ignored.