| Bio-waste disposal centres shortlisted
By Suhit Kelkar/TNN
Mumbai: Faced with the growing problem of how to dispose of the piles
of bio-medical waste, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC)
has shortlisted seven sites in the city to set up three or four waste
Hospitals will also have to pay moreóRs 40 per kg of waste as opposed
to the earlier Rs 18 per kg. Tenders for the waste disposal proposal
are being scrutinised by the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board,
the consultant for the bio-med waste disposal project. The city generates
about three tonnes of bio-med waste daily.
MPCB regional officer Bharat Nimbarte said the charges were necessary
to make the centres financially viable for private sector operators.
The Western and Eastern suburbs will get a centre each, while the
city may get two. Each centre will cater to between 80,000 to one
The shortlisted sites are: Vaikunthdham Cemetery at Mazgaon, the Hindu
cemeteries at at E Moses Road, Cheetah Camp and Marve Road; a recreational
ground plot at Anik village at the Malad lagoons, Deonar dumping ground
and Centenary Hospital at Govandi.
According to the project proposal document, the centres will be run
by private operators without any capital or manpower contribution
from the BMC. The operator will also have to transport the waste from
the hospital to the centre. The municipalityís role is restricted
to leasing land to operators and supplying water to the centres.
This emphasis on private initiative is the result of the BMC burning
its fingers on its previous bio-med waste disposal when it was forced
to shut down its incinerator at Sewri in 2003 after residents complained
of respiratory problems caused by pollution. There were other problems:
last year, a contractor in charge of transporting waste to Sewri reportedly
sold it in the market.
Now the Sewri facility is used only to sterilise non-incinerable waste
by autoclaving it. Since 2003, incinerable waste has been transported
to Taloja to be disposed of by a private company. The BMC is worried
because the highly infectious waste is trucked to Taloja through bustling
residential areas. Also, hospitals are unhappy with the high transport