Companies plan to file petition in HC against civic body, say their foreign counterparts refuse to set up branch in industrial area because of stench, associated health hazards
The industrial units in Ramtekdi that have been facing a tough time because of the PMC garbage processing plant in the vicinity have decided to file a petition in the Bombay High Court next week against the civic body.
A number of engineering, mechanical and food industries that are spread over more than 150 acres in the Ramtekdi industrial area claim that their foreign partners have been refusing to set up branches in the area due to the strong stench of the garbage and increasing number of flies that cause serious health hazards.
Losses piling up: About 60 companies in Ramtekdi industrial area say
they have been facing losses as most projects have either been stalled
or shifted because of the garbage processing unit. Pic/Ishan Ghosh
In the process, about 60 companies have been facing huge losses as most of the projects have either been stalled or shifted outside the city. Eagle Burgmann India Pvt Ltd, a company at the unit whose Japanese counterparts were supposed to set up a plant to manufacture mechanical seal for automobile industries, had to stall its multi-crore project because of the garbage unit that processes 80 tonnes to 100 tonnes of garbage every day.
The companies in thepetition will mention how the civic body has flouted guidelines set up by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) while about 2,000 workers in the area are affected because of the smell and flies. The companies have been making requests to shut down the Ramtekdi garbage unit and operate it in other non-industrial and non-residential area.
Speaking to MiD DAY, Jimmy Pantaki, MD of Eagle Burgmann, who filed an RTI last month on the garbage unit stated that the RTI revealed that the MPCB had given strict instruction to the civic body that the unit will be allowed to operate only if no stench emanates from the processing unit. "This shows how rules are being flouted. All major foreign companies who check the soil, water and other facilities of the land before setting up projects have been evading Ramtekdi. We give a revenue of around Rs 70-80 crore to the government every month and this is what we are getting in return," he added.
Vikas Jagtap, Vice Chairman of Ramtekdi Industries Association said, "Foreign companies are considering setting up their projects in another city or state as it cannot be set up here. The civic body does not understand that companies here offer lot of employment while the state and central government get tax benefits."
Garbage processing unit instead of garden
G Corp Properties Pvt Ltd, a construction company at Ramtekdi, holds a 16-acre plot in the industrial area, out of which some 25 per cent of the land was handed over to the PMC for amenities. It was expected that the land would be utilised for a garden, but the corporation instead set up a garbage processing unit in 2006.
The other side
Suresh Jagtap, solid waste management chief, PMC, said, "The MPCB had given us an approval to set up a plant after checking the place. Though waste segregation is being done there we have been spraying chemicals daily to prevent stench. But I cannot comment about the petition at present."