Meghalaya High Court calls on state government and civic authorities to address garbage issue in Jowai

The High Court of Meghalaya recently hoped that with the intervention of the highest authorities of the state, the situation will improve on the pile of garbage in the city of Jowai, which poses a major problem and can lead to risks for health.

The Division Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Judge W. Diengdoh heard a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by a Synjuk Ki Waheh Shnong complaining that household garbage and general garbage were not collected in the urban area of ​​Jowai Township from February 4, 2022.

The State and Jowai City Council reported to the House that things have improved and the state government has provided a temporary site for the immediate dumping of garbage.

However, the city council argued that objections from local village chiefs near the permanent site prevented faster removal of the garbage from Jowai. The state said the market area in Iawmusiang has been cleared and the city council said rubbish was no longer on the streets and several lots had been loaded onto vehicles and were in turn transported to the site. temporary discharge. The city council further said that several of the vehicles carrying garbage are parked beyond the city limits after being completely covered to ensure there is no spillage or rainwater. do not enter the garbage.

The petitioner relied on photographs showing a significant part of the town of Jowai with garbage piled up. The photograph is believed to be from May 10, 2022. Another photograph from the same day, the court noted, showed trash on the road, but it is completely covered in plastic sheets or tarps. In the third photograph, several trucks are shown queuing on a street beyond the city limits, presumably loaded with garbage, but each truck was covered in plastic sheets or tarps.

The state and city council said steps have been taken to ensure trash removal at the temporary site until objections are resolved for a long-term solution. The city council assured the High Court that the state health department had been enlisted to ensure there was no spread of disease from the rubbish collected, whether from those lying around in the streets or from those packed into vehicles.

The Court observes that there must be cooperation from all to ensure a reasonable solution to the problem. It is not enough for garbage to remain piled up in the streets for an indefinite period. Also, loading garbage into trucks and parking trucks beyond the city limits can only be a measure taken for a day or two and cannot be continued indefinitely.

Therefore, the Court asked the heads of the affected villages to sit down with the representatives of the state government and the city council to ensure a quick and fair solution. The state and city council should also keep the interests of the villagers in mind when choosing and securing the permanent site(s). If necessary, the proposed temporary and permanent sites should be sealed to isolate the villages from any spillage of the dumped garbage or any infiltration of rainwater contaminated by the dumped garbage, the bench directed.

“It is hoped that the situation will improve with the intervention of the highest authorities of the State because it is a major problem in the region and can lead to health risks, even a disaster. Let the question appear in a week to track the progress that has taken place. List on May 20, 2022,” the order reads.