Gandhinagar, the Gujarat capital and the youngest municipal corporation in the state, has never had a scientifically designed landfill site since its foundation. It had been illegally disposing of the trash on the Sabarmati bank in Sector 30 for ten years. Despite holding the state secretariat, the Gandhinagar municipal corporation had to find land to create a legal, secure dump site.
According to the statistics, every day, inhabitants of Gandhinagar produce 110 metric tonnes of waste. Gandhinagar Municipal Corporation (GMC) ditches it near the Mukti Dham crematorium in Sector 30. The river is only 150 metres away, while the Chief Minister’s residence is 2 kilometres from the site.
Gandhinagar: Ranked 22 In Cleanest Cities Of India List
There are thousands of tonnes of legacy debris at the dumping location. Every monsoon, leachate from the site and trash, including plastic, metal, and household waste pour into the river. However, Gandhinagar ranked 22 in Swachh Bharat Sarvekshan with a three-star rating for garbage-free cities in May 2020.
Swachh Bharat Sarvekshan 2021 ranked Gandhinagar as the cleanest state capital in the country. The city administration repeatedly asked the state for a landfill site in 2011, almost a year after the GMC’s establishment. When its cries for help went unanswered, it became so frustrating that it even discharged excrement on the main helipad of the capital, used for VIP landings.
According to a GMC official, “This caused an uproar. Urban development officials contacted the revenue department on the same day and finalized a spot 15km away from the city. However, the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) rejected the site. Back then, it was under development, citing that it was only a few hundred metres from the river.”
Till 2019, GMC has proposed a site near Pethapur village, but protests broke out because the location was so close to a temple. The government also considered an area close to Lodhara, but that also did not appear to be viable. GMC issued a request for bids (RFP) in March to build its official waste dump on a sizable piece of land close to the crematorium in Sector 30.
Jashu Patel, chairman of the GMC standing committee, said, “We are getting GPCB approval for developing this plot as the official dumpsite.”