Delhi Minister seeks to meet Harsh Vardhan over landfill site issue

New Delhi: Delhi Environment Minister Imran Hussain on Wednesday sought an appointment with Union Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Harsh Vardhan over the selection of landfill sites in the capital as the three existing ones have exceeded their capacity to manage municipal solid waste.

This request came a day after the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) moved the National Green Tribunal (NGT) seeking cancellation of allotment of two landfill sites in the city — Sonia Vihar and Ghonda Gujaran — by Central government-controlled Delhi Development Authority to a civic body ruled by the BJP.

In a letter addressed to Harsh Vardhan, Hussain complained that the sites identified by DDA in Sonia Vihar can cause “grave” environmental problems, and are also in the midst of thickly populated area inhabited mostly by underprivileged sections of the society.

He said that the selection of new sites “needs to be decided keeping fully in view the local factors viz, population size residing in the neighbourhood, threats of water pollution due to leaching of harmful and toxic substances, threats of air pollution…”

To ensure holistic development of the city, he said, there was an “urgent” need to identify waste disposal sites keeping in mind health, safety and well being of neighbouring residents.