Morung Express News
Dimapur | August 12
The meeting between the Municipal Affairs Department (MAD) and the protestors demanding the relocation of the DMC garbage dumping ground ended in a stalemate. As brokered on August 11, Parliamentary Secretary for Municipal Affairs, Zhaleo Rio met with the two councils of Sunrise colony and Naga Colony today in Dimapur.
The two localities, located in close proximity to the garbage site, while raising concern over health risks posed by the site, are spearheading a movement to move it. The two parties however failed to find middle ground as both stuck to their positions.
The department’s attempt to appease fell apart as the two councils made it clear that accepting the MAD’s proposal for a sewage plant at the existing site was out of question. The councils, while maintaining that the MAD must move the site as assured, reiterated that the latter has failed on its promises several times.
The Parliamentary Secretary had appealed that the proposed Solid Waste Management Plant be allowed and for the interim the DMC take measures to ease the anguish of the residents nearby the site. He directed that the DMC immediately dig landfills and soak pits for septic waste while the existing scattered waste be collected and piled as far away as possible from the adjacent houses.
Secretary of the Sunrise Colony Council, Athempu Kamei said that since the meeting ended in a deadlock, they have no option but to take the legal route. “We attended the meeting expecting a solution but it was not up to our expectation,” said Kamei of the day’s meeting. As citizens of a democratic country, he said that it is their right to demand a healthy life.
“We are not against the company or the plant. They have highlighted us on the supposed advantages of the plant. However, our only demand is that it be shifted and set up some place else.”
Asked whether the residents will resort to blocking the route to the disposal site, Kamei said that a decision to that effect will be known only after the two councils meet on Sunday. Meanwhile, he added that they will prepare groundwork for filing a case in court.
Speaking to The Morung Express after the meeting, Zhaleo Rio maintained that the government “is not taking the path of confrontation” rather has been requesting the agitators to understand since “we don’t have any alternative dumping site.” While stating the residents have all reason to be annoyed, he added, “(Only) We don’t want to give any false assurances.”
Asked on what made the government initially agree to relocate, he averred that there could have been misjudgement. Expressing dismay over the DMC’s waste disposal process, he said that he has directed it to further streamline the operation.
“The boundary construction (for the plant) is on and machineries have been ordered. I think they can complete this in a year’s time. Once this thing is installed and operation starts let’s hope it will not be something adverse to us,” he said of the proposed Waste management plant.
Commissioner & Secretary, Municipal Affairs, M. Patton while stating that periodical relocation disposal sites is not feasible, noted that the best possible alternative was a solid waste management and thus the proposed plant.
Dr. SM Misra, Managing Director of the company, which would set up the proposed plant downplayed the concern over health risks. He said that the technology used will pose no threat to humans and the environment as the same technology is already in use in the West. He added that the waste collected will be auto-segregated by machines and then processed to be converted into bio-fuel while organic residue will be converted into compost for agriculture. “Except technical persons, we have given the commitment that 70 percent of the employment at the plant will be from the local populace.”
With regard to the nature of the deal between the State Government and the company (New Waves Bio Fuels India), Dr. Misra said that it is a Private Public Partnership for a certain period of time during which the company will invest or pump in the requisite amount.
“This is not a grant-in-aid from the central government or the state government. The state government has provided the land and we are going to establish our plant.” The business idea, he added is to recover the investment through the selling of the bio-fuel and compost generated from the waste.
Dimapur civil society orgs ask govt to
complete waste management project
DIMAPUR, AUGUST 12 (MExN): A group of Dimapur based civil society organizations have requested the Municipal Affairs Department (MAD) of the Government of Nagaland to complete the proposed waste management project in Dimapur by October 2018.
In the midst of a controversy that threatens to raise a stench, the organizations today wrote to the Parliamentary Secretary of Municipal Affairs to execute the October 2016 tripartite agreement between MAD and Newwaves Bio-fuels India Pvt. Ltd. in a matter of two years as per agreement. The organizations include the Naga Council, Dimapur, Naga Women’s Hoho, Dimapur, Dimapur Urban Council Chairmen Federation, GB’s Union, and Dimapur District Citizen Forum.
“In the event of failure to complete the project within the stipulated time, the general public of Dimapur shall not remain a mere spectator, but will do anything within its power against either the Government of Nagaland or the New Waves Bio-fuels India Pvt, for the interest of the general public and for the ends of justice,” it stated in the letter.
The organizations further requested the MAD to enable the Dimapur Municipal Council (DMC) to dump garbage and waste at the present dumping site till October 2018 when the project is hopefully completed. “In the event of non cooperation or protest by the Sunrise Colony against dumping of wastage at the present site, the general public of Dimapur has resolved to proceed for de-recognition of the said colony from the concerned authority,” the letter warned.
It thus asked MAD to look into the matter and take necessary action at the earliest “failing which” the signatory organizations will “take necessary steps so as to bring justice to the general public.”