THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: As if all the rebukes it has been receiving from all sides on the mounting garbage was not enough, the City Corporation has now yet another problem to tackle. The Centre for Environment and Development (CED), the operating agency of the Vilappilsala waste treatment plant, has backed out from the responsibility of running the plant.
The CED had given a letter to the Corporation in the month of December itself, asking that it be relieved from the role of the operating agency on the date of expiry of the three-month notice period. With the Vilappilsala plant lying closed for more than 25 days now, the agency has literally no role to play there.
"Our role was basically to offer technical support. Now that the plant has been shut down and all these problems have cropped up, we have no role there. So, why should we hang on?’’ asks Babu Ambat, Director of CED. According to him, CED has gone out of job at the plant.
When asked if a favourable court order would make them have a rethink, Babu Ambat said that "it has not been thought about.’’ As of now, the CED is planning to quit, he said.
However, the Corporation says it is not affected by the CED’s decision. The employees who have been running or operating the plant have been there for many years now. Some of them had joined when the plant was started 11 years ago. The expertise of the employees would keep the plant running, with or without an operating agency.
"It is not an immediate issue since the opening or closing of the plant is under the consideration of the Court. But if and when the plant is opened, the Corporation is capable of operating it by itself. There should be no qualms since the leachate treatment plant has been completed and the rest of the issues are being sorted out,’’ said a top Corporation official.
The Vilappilsala waste treatment plant was run by the Poabs group for over seven years. It was almost two years back that the CED took over once the Poabs group and the Corporation fell out over the expense of running the plant.