Is 'Smart' city turns into stinking city?

Smart City Kochi News on 26th July 2007

The city, Kerala's commercial and IT hub, is fast turning into a 'stinking' city with authorities unable to find ways to dispose about 250 tonnes of garbage generated each day here.

The city does not have a waste treatment plant and the garbage generated was being dumped at nearby Brahmapuram, where the plant is expected to come up in six months time.

However, following protests from the residents of the area, authorities were forced to find alternate site at the Greater Island Development Authority (GIDA) at Marine Drive. But that site also ran into trouble, with children of the area falling sick and being hospitalised.

Since the past four days,garbage removal has come to a standstill and mounds of household and other waste can be seen strewn on the roadsides.

Efforts are being made to explore other sites for dumping the garbage and seek the Kerala High Court's permission in this regard, Ernakulam District Collector, A P M Mohammed Hanish said.

The garbage was earlier being dumped at nearby Wellington island, where the headquarters of the Southern Naval command is located. But after the navy objected, it was decided to dispose of the waste at Brahmapuram.

Now, efforts are being made to seek the Navy's permission once again.

What is giving sleepless nights to the authorities is that the district medical officials have warned of high vector indices in the city.

Kochi is the gateway to Kerala with its international airport, sea port and has good rail connectivity.

Several major projects, including the Rs 2,000 crore Smart IT infrastructure city project of the Dubai-based TECOM group, Vallarpadam International container Trainshipment Terminal, LNG Terminal, Rs 5,000 crore IT project of Shobha group "are all lined and the city is on the verge of explosive growth," say experts.

The smart city project alone will create about 90,000 jobs and in Infopark, where IT majors Wipro, TCS, IBS have set up operations, about 30,000 jobs are expected to be generated in the coming three years.

Kochi has seen a construction boom with major builders choosing the city for their various projects.

The government has to find a solution to dispose of the garbage before the situation gets out of control, say experts.



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