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Solid waste being thrown in natural drains, MC sleeps

DHARAMSALA: Tonnes of solid waste is going in natural drains in Dharamsala.

Lalit Mohan

Tribune News Service

Dharamsala, February 15

Tonnes of solid waste is going in natural drains in Dharamsala. People are using these for disposing of solid waste due to inadequate number of dustbins in the Municipal Council (MC) area and the failure of the authorities to impose fines as deterrents.

Executive Officer of the Dharamsala MC Lalit Kumar said anyone disposing of solid waste in natural drains could be fined between Rs 2,500 and Rs 25,000. He, however, said the MC had not fined a single person. Sanitary officials said they could not impose fine as whenever they tried to act tough, local politicians intervened.

As per the MC authorities, about 15 metric tonnes solid waste is generated daily in the area. The solid waste increases in the tourist season when a floating population of about 50,000 to 1 lakh people visits the town.

To handle such a huge amount solid waste, the MC has 44 garbage containers and 47 small dustbins. The Executive Officer admits that the MC is short of about 30 garbage containers and about 50 small dustbins.

He, however, said people were not allowing them to keep these near their houses or commercial establishments. Many areas in Dharamsala do not have any dustbin or garbage container. The Civil Lines does not have any dustbin.

Ravi Gupta, a resident of the Depot Bazaar, said people did not allow dustbins to be placed near their house as they were unhygienic and not cleaned by the authorities. If clean dustbins were kept and emptied once a day they would not oppose.

The garbage that is going down the natural drains includes plastic and other polluting material. The offence assumes some significance as in lower areas at places, these drains merge with drinking water channel.

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