Toxic garbage-burning smoke engulfs Vijayanagar Third Stage
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Toxic garbage-burning smoke engulfs Vijayanagar Third Stage

February 22, 2024

MCC blames Hootagalli CMC; Hootagalli CMC says not us but MCC and MUDA

Mysore/Mysuru: While open dumping has remained a persistent concern in Mysuru over recent years, residents allege that garbage dumped at vast dump yards is set on fire during the night to expediently dispose of unsegregated waste.

Over the past two days, residents of Vijayanagar Third Stage near a vacant space at Bogadi Lake on Basavanahalli Road (Ring Road) have been contending with thick and toxic smoke due to a significant garbage dump yard fire.

Drop in air quality

Numerous residents from Vijayanagar Third and Fourth Stage, Garudachar Layout, Hebbal, Metagalli and other outlying areas characterised by revenue sites, Mysuru Urban Development Authority (MUDA) and Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) Layouts, and extensive CA sites, have reported dense smoke and subsequent  declines in air quality.

Residents reported that the garbage dump near their homes was ignited on Monday night and the fire quickly spread. Despite numerous complaints lodged with MCC, MUDA and Hootagalli CMC, the authorities have yet to remove the garbage accumulated in their locality, turning it into a breeding ground for diseases.

They expressed how the burning of garbage severely impacts their ability to breathe, particularly during the night and early morning hours. “If you observe the streetlight bulbs at night, they are all obscured by thick smoke, drastically reducing visibility. This situation is particularly distressing for individuals with sinus issues,” a resident remarked.

Breathing difficulties

The situation is dire, with mounds of garbage strewn about and the area overrun by snakes, vultures and stray dogs. The pervasive smoke drifts across the entire layout, exacerbating air pollution and consequently causing breathing difficulties, particularly for individuals afflicted with asthma. The relevant authorities must take swift action to address this issue and alleviate the plight of the residents, they added.

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While MCC and MUDA have distanced themselves from the issue of garbage burning, attributing responsibility to the Hootagalli City Municipal Council (CMC), the Hootagalli CMC authorities have refuted any involvement.

Blame on Hootagalli CMC

MCC Commissioner Ashaad-Ur-Rahman Shariff explained to Star of Mysore that while MCC is tasked with providing water, streetlights, underground drainage (UGD) and utilities, the maintenance of the area falls under the purview of  Hootagalli CMC.

“The layouts have been developed by MUDA and MUDA is responsible for tax collection. The garbage collected from Vijayanagar Third and Fourth Stage, along with surrounding layouts, is dumped here. It appears that some MCC or MUDA workers set the fire and now they are shifting the blame onto us. However, we have no involvement in this matter,” stated Hootagalli CMC Commissioner Narasimhamurthy.

Residents said that the impact of the smoke was so powerful that its effects linger inside houses for hours on end. This is causing numerous health issues for residents of all ages. Whether it’s individuals going for evening walks, children playing outdoors, people returning home from work, elderly individuals staying indoors, or infants, the entire community, along with the environment and birds, is being adversely affected.

“We are increasingly susceptible to severe lung infections, asthma, respiratory disorders and breathing difficulties. The lack of oxygen content in the air during the night exacerbates the danger. We find ourselves unable to even open our doors and windows,”  they elaborated.

Following public complaints, the authorities from Hootagalli CMC intervened this afternoon to take measures to douse the burning garbage.


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