CDA and MCI rift causing Capital to stink


–Residents of I-12 suffer as two top bodies fail to agree on garbage dumping site

ISLAMABAD: The residents of I-12 sector are facing a constant problem of nauseating smell emitting from the overflowing landfill site as Capital Development Authority (CDA) and Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad (MCI) have made no headway to set up a permanent garbage dumping site at a designated place near Sangjani.

They have complained time and again at appropriate forums to shift the dumping site from residential area to the proper place so that they could get rid of the constant problems, which is posing great health risks to the residents.

At present, there is no plan under consideration for establishing a permanent garbage dumping site to dispose of the total generated trash of the federal capital due to the recent decision of Capital Development Authority (CDA) for not providing the land for this purpose.

Talking to APP, Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad (MCI) Sanitation Directorate’s a senior official said, previously, the authorities concerned decided to set up a scientific dumping site near Sangjani and the CDA was supposed to allocate over 70-acre land in this regard.

He said the area near Sangjani was selected due to its minimum hauling distance, suitable topography, distant from aircraft route for flight safety and socio-environmental factors.

He said the MCI has decided to resist the recent decision of Capital Development Authority (CDA), adding that the mayor Islamabad would formally ask the CDA to allocate the same land selected over a year ago.

He said that the corporation had completed its homework and was ready to shift the garbage from I-12 to Sangjani, but a sudden change in the plan would further aggravate the prevailing situation as the present site had already exceeded from its actual capacity, he added.

The official said the MCI was in correspondence with CDA for the last couple of months and asked if it had any intention to back out from its commitment it should inform the corporation earlier.

“A continuous delay in giving proper scientific land site may not let the department concerned to dispose of the capital’s trash properly for another year,” the senior official regretted.

The sanitation directorate of MCI had sent three consecutive reminders to CDA for allocation of land but they did not respond.

In a recent letter to the CDA, the MCI has informed the civic body that the site allocated in Sector 1-12 by the Planning Wing in 2012 for the final disposal of about 750-800 metric tons of garbage and municipal solid waste on daily basis was running out of space for further utilization.

The directorate was facing many hardships in daily disposal of garbage, especially in the rainy weather due to the expiry of the site, the letter added.

The department reiterated in the letter that an appropriate site may be allocated to the Sanitation Directorate without any delay in finalizing permanent landfill site.

About Kurri Landfill project planned a half-decade ago was also seemed to be a fancy flight, the official said.

When contacted CDA, the spokesperson said the civic agency was not supposed to procure the land for MCI as it already was supporting the corporation by issuing the salaries of employees and paying utility bills.

The MCI should buy land on its own adding that the CDA could only give no objection certificate (NOC) which would also subject to the approval of the Environmental Protection Agency.

According to Islamabad Local Government Act, 2015 schedule III class (d), the spokesperson said the handling of capital’s garbage fall within MCI’s jurisdiction.

Meanwhile, the residents of the IJP area were constantly voicing their concerns and said that they were forced to suffer from the stench of heaps of garbage being dumped here.

Ramzan Khaliq, a resident of I-12 said he was forced to shut the windows of his home due to such bad smell, adding that this garbage was spreading infectious diseases in the locality.

He said, he had lodged written complaints at different forums but to no avail, urging the authorities concerned to relocate this site from here and set up out of populated areas.