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On Swachh Bharat day, APMC Vashi dirty as ever

Rotten vegetables and fruits strewn all over the place, stagnant dirty water - it was business as usual for the wholesale market on October 2, the day the cleanliness drive was launched

While most civic and government bodies participated in, or at least posed for pictures for, the ‘Swachh Bharat’ clean-up campaign launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the state-run Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) market in Vashi was filthy as ever on the day of the launch, and even the next day.

Traders at the market told this paper that it was business as usual on October 2, the launch day of the campaign and no cleanliness drive was conducted. Heaps of waste produce were seen lying in the commercial blocks. mid-day’s visit revealed the same sorry state of affairs the next day as well.

Rotten vegetables and fruits were strewn at the entrance of all commercial blocks, and stagnant water posed an open invitation to mosquitoes. This is a common scene at the market; the problem only worsens during monsoon, when people have to wade through dirty water that fills up the narrow lanes of the commercial block.

mid-day has reported on the unhygienic conditions inside the APMC Vashi market in the past, highlighting the need for the state-run body to get its act together, especially since the produce for almost the entire city goes out to retailers from this very market.

APMC speak
The APMC, however, is largely indifferent towards cleanliness issues. Commenting on the cleanliness drive launched by the Centre, Sudhir Tungar, APMC secretary, said, “We carry out cleaning inside the market on a daily basis. Hence, conducting such special drives makes no difference.”

Voices

Deepak Jaiswal, a fruit trader
Workers assigned for the clean-up job hardly do their work properly. Officials should guide them or come up with ideas for a cleaner market.

Sridhar Pawale, a vegetable trader
The problem of garbage accumulation arises due to a lack of disposal methods in the market. APMC needs to provide an alternative for disposing waste, such as large waste bins, outside every commercial block.

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