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Sena behind Deonar fire

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Kirit Somaiya says that there is an alleged nexus between Sena and garbage contractors.

Kirit Somaiya Deonar

The Deonar dumping ground fire has already been doused but political blame games have started over this issue. BJP MP Kirit Somaiya has held Shiv Sena responsible for the fire incident. Somaiya said that there is an alleged nexus between Sena, garbage contractors and no steps have been taken by them to resolve this issue.

He added that even though Sena is ruling the BMC but the party is least bothered about the hardships faced by Deonar residents and people living in the vicinity. Somaiya had held a demonstration and demanded the relocation of the Deonar dumping ground. He also demanded the closure of the Mulund dumping ground and scientific disposal at all other sites in the city. Somaiya has called for a judicial probe into this issue. His move to protest on the issue is being seen as an attempt to corner the Shiv Sena. BJP is the junior partner in the BMC which is ruled by the Shiv Sena.

Kirit Somaiya said, “The state government has decentralised garbage disposal at the ward level. However, the BMC is not executing the work. According to experts, at least 7,000 metric tonnes of garbage is generated daily in Mumbai, but the civic body has paid contractors for 10,000 metric tonnes. There is a huge scam going on.”

On the other hand, Sanjay Nirupam criticised BJP-Shiv Sena for its inability to tackle recurring fires erupting at Deonar dumping ground. He said, “The BJP is least bothered about this issue despite being in power. Residents are already complaining about irritation and suffocation due to smoke emanating from the dumping ground.”

On Saturday Congress workers on Saturday staged a rasta roko (road blockade) near the Deonar dumping ground and demanded that it be shifted to Taloja in Navi Mumbai.

“Entire Mumbai is turning into a gas chamber and people are forced to live by adjusting with the emission of the toxic gases. We are here to warn the concerned politicians and bureaucrats that this will not be tolerated now and this menace of frequent fires has to stop,” Nirupam added.

Deonar dumping ground was to be closed in 2000 as it was overfull, but due to lackadaisical approach of the bureaucrats and the ruling Shiv Sena-BJP corporators, it was still in use, he said. “Solid Waste Management department of Mumbai corporation has a budget of almost Rs 2,000 crore this year, but it could get only 11 cctv cameras (for vigilance at Deonar ground),” he alleged.

Somaiya nonetheless blamed Nirupam for politicising the Deonar dumping ground issue. He said, “Nirupam is playing politics of garbage. He should stop deriving political mileage out of this issue.”

The Shiv Sena is yet to pass any comment about the fire incident. The BMC had claimed that the recent fire at the Deonar dumping ground was an act of sabotage, but police officials have denied any sabotage angle in the incident. However, a case was registered against unknown persons.

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