2013: A 'Wasted' Year for City Corporation
By Express News Service | Published: 31st December 2013 09:38 AM |
While the year 2013 bids adieu, stocktaking throws up the same old stinking stories of the previous year with a few new additions.
The month of January 2013 opened with the City Corporation launching a new weapon from its arsenal to beat the ‘plastic monster.’ Mayor K Chandrika and team, irrespective of party and politics, unleashed a blitzkrieg in markets and shopping centres alike, seizing bulks of plastic carrybags to be transported away. The campaign brought about a sea change, with a lion’s share of vendors in the city switching to cloth bags. But it did not take much time for the initiative to sing the swan song. The campaign ended and things are now back to square one.
Giving new promises to tackle solid waste, as Vilappilsala gates remained padlocked for the second consecutive year, the government offered to set up decentralised waste treatment plants in the city. In place of the sole waste plant at Vilappilsala, four plants were announced, in every Assembly constituency in the city - Nemom, Vattiyoorkavu, Chalai and Kazhakkoottam.
Meetings were convened by Ministers in the presence of MLAs and representatives of local people and though the concern ‘’Not in My Backyard’’ was aired by many, the Ministers promised that the plants would come up. Now, when the year is coming to a close, this decentralised waste management move tops the list of non-starters.
The ‘much-promising’ mobile incinerator that came all the way from Gujarat said goodbye to the city in 2013. It ended up being a fuel-guzzling machine burning a hole in the pocket of the civic body. For months, it lay idle near the World Market at Anayara and the City Corporation that offered a red carpet welcome to the machine symbolically wrote its elegy also by placing wreaths on it.
The mobile incinerator was later rolled to Malappuram.
Taking a cue from the ‘successful’ landfilling done at Murukkumpuzha by constructing a railway platform, the Corporation tried to repeat the act at Chirayinkeezhu with people’s support.
However, the ground water pollution at Murukkumpuzha allegedly caused by the leakage from the garbage landfill brought the garbage transportation to Chirayinkeezhu to a standstill.
The hopes of setting up a waste treatment at Chalai ended when the government pleader told the High Court that the government did not wish to proceed with the plan further. The City Corporation’s announcement of setting up biogas plants and windrow composts in select locations also remains on paper.