KATHMANDU: Locals on Monday padlocked the Teku waste transfer station after residents in its vicinity started falling sick due to the foul smell emanating from garbage piled at the center.
They padlocked the center as the Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) office failed to remove the waste within 15 days as promised.
Raju Maharjan, a local, said his two daughters have been suffering from hacking cough and fever due to foul smell of emanating from the garbage for the last two months.
“Many locals have been complaining of sickness due to the foul smell. But the authorities continue to dump solid waste at the transfer station instead of taking it to landfill site in Okharpauwa of Nuwakot. So, we padlocked the station,” said Maharjan.
Locals had padlocked the station for almost four hours from 7 to 10 am in the morning. As a result, garbage trucks had to wait to dump the solid waste. KMC opened the center after police intervened.
However, locals plan to padlock the transfer station on Wednesday as well.
Hundreds of tons of solid wastages have accumulated at the only waste transfer station. Residents of Kalimati, Teku, Kuleshwar, and Sanepa have been badly hit as a result.
Every day, Kathmandu produces over 500 tons of solid waste, according to KMC. But lately, hardly 150 tons of solid wastage is being transferred to the landfill site. As a result, over 21,000 tons of solid waste has accumulated at the center.
KMC officials say they have not been able to dump the garbage at the landfill site due to poor condition of dirt road leading to Okharpauwa. Heavy rainfall has made matters worse, they say.
Hari Kuwar, chief of the environment division of KMC, said that it only has ten garbage trucks to dump the garbage. “We are in the process of hiring additional 14 garbage trucks,” he added.
“A huge amount of garbage has piled up at the center. There is widespread corruption in KMC,” accused Maharjan. He said the garbage truck of KMC also collects garbage collected by private sector. “In this way, KMC officials are making money from the private sector,” he claimed.
An official at the environment division of KMC also echoed Maharjan. “It is the first time that the transfer station has such a huge amount of garbage. KMC´s garbage trucks have been dumping garbage for the private sector as well,” added the source.
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