The Jhajjar Municipal Committee has hired a private firm to collect garbage door-to-door and from public places but heaps of garbage and solid waste can be seen at markets and alongside roads in the city.
There is no solid waste management plant in Jhajjar district and garbage and waste are dumped at an open place near the Kosli bypass in Jhajjar. The dumping ground has turned into a breeding ground for mosquitoes and a foul smell emanating from garbage has made difficult the life of people residing in nearby areas. Stray animals can be seen rummaging through garbage for eatables.
“We cannot have a morning walk in our areas due to the stink from garbage spreading all around. The garbage dump has become a health hazard for local residents who have approached the higher authorities several times, and urged them to shift dumping of waste elsewhere, but to no avail. We cannot even stay at home as winds bring foul smell,” says Sumitra Devi, who lives near the dumping ground.
Pawan, another affected resident, says smoke generated by burning of polythene bags and garbage at the site is causing the breathing problem among residents, especially children. Stray animals can be seen eating garbage the whole day. It has also become a breeding ground for mosquitoes, posing a serious threat of vector-borne diseases. Despite protests by people, the municipal committee has not resolved the problems, he adds.
Residents of Bahadurgarh Industrial Town, who reside near the garbage dumping ground of the Bahadurgah Municipal Council on the Badli road near Naya Gaon village, have a similar tale to tell.
Rakesh Joon, a resident of HL City, says besides residents of his locality, those living in Naya Gaon, Soldha and Jagatpur villages are bearing the brunt of the dumping ground, as garbage being burnt there in violation of norms is causing air pollution.
“Villagers had blocked the Badli road and lodged complaints against the dumping ground several times but the situation remains unchanged,” he adds.
Om Prakash, a social activist, says door-to-door garbage collection is done only in the morning regularly but waste can be seen along roads and in various markets in both Jhajjar and Bahadurgarh cities in the evening. “The municipal authorities have placed an adequate number of dustbins at all points in Jhajjar and Bahadurgarh for garbage and solid waste dumping but people prefer to throw garbage in the open or along roads,” says Ashok Kumar, an advocate. Cleanness cannot be ensured without the participation of residents, he adds.
Narender Saini, Secretary of the Municipal Committee, says the site on the Kosli bypass is not a dumping ground and is used only to collect garbage for further dumping at Utlodha village where the municipal committee has 8.5 acres for the purpose.
“At least 100 tonnes of garbage is required to set up a solid waste management plant. Hence, the government has divided local bodies in clusters and Jhajjar falls in the Rohtak cluster where a solid waste management plant is being developed. Over 20 tonnes of garbage is collected in Jhajjar city every day,” says Saini. Solid waste will be sent to Rohtak as soon as the plant starts functioning there, he adds.
Saini claims that 240 small dustbins and 24 big dustbins have been kept at various places in the Jhajjar municipality area and 142 sanitary employees work every day to keep Jhajjar city clean. “A cleanliness drive is going on well, as no complaint of garbage piling up has been received,” he adds.