Mumbai: Who is dumping medical waste on our beaches?

Jun 25, 2018, 07:43 IST | Suyash Karangutkar

Citizen have complained to the MPCB about the waste on Dadar and Mahim beaches, but it wants culprit to be found before lodging case

Mumbai: Who is dumping medical waste on our beaches?
Jay Shringarpure, a local activist, shows some of the medical waste that has washed up on Mahim beach. Pics/Bipin Kokate

Despite citizen-activists' complaints that medical waste has been washing up at Dadar and Mahim beaches, the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) has not yet registered a case, saying they are waiting to find the culprit behind this.

Local activist Jay Shringarpure, 35, said he first found a black bag full of medical waste two months ago at Dadar beach. He claimed that while he complained to the MPCB, no action was taken.

According to his team of volunteers, the quantity of medical waste being recovered from the beaches has shot up. This reporter accompanied the team to the two beaches early on Sunday, only to find himself stepping onto medical waste every few seconds. This included syringes, needles, droppers, an anti-tetanus vaccination bottle, and few bottles with drops of blood in them.

Disposal system
According to senior doctors Veda Simons and Pravin Simons, there is a proper bio-medical waste system in place in the state. "Hospitals, nursing homes and clinics are very particular about the disposal system. Authorised contractors pick up the waste, before disposing it in Deonar," said Dr Veda Simons. "Somebody must be taking a short-cut," added Dr Pravin Simons.

Waiting for the culprit
"Till we find the culprit, we cannot do anything. Once we find who is behind this, we will act immediately. So far we have not registered a complaint regarding this," said G Sangewar, regional officer from MPCB.

Officials speak
Vishakha Raut, corporator from Dadar, said, "It is important to find the source. I will ask the ward officer tomorrow itself to effectively look into this." mid-day could not reach Sheetal Gambhir Desai, corporator from Mahim, for her comments.

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