Vehicles fall into Kondli canal after landfill site collapses, many feared trapped

Rescue operations underway at Ghazipur landfill where a mound of garbage collapsed in east Delhi
Rescue operations underway at Ghazipur landfill where a mound of garbage collapsed in east Delhi
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02 September, 2017

A political blame game erupted in Delhi on Friday following the death of two persons, including a woman, in the collapse of a large portion of a landfill in east Delhi's Ghazipur earlier in the day.

A National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) team, comprising 45 personnel, also rushed to the site, a senior NDRF official said.

Due to the impact of the collapse, a Hyundai X-cent sedan, a motorcycle and a scooter fell into the canal and were pulled out later.

Last year, the Supreme Court had compared the height of the garbage dumps in the city to Qutub Minar, which stands at 72.5 metres.

Chitra Mukherjee, the head of programmes at NGO Chintan, which works with rag-pickers who sift through the garbage at these landfills, said the government only wakes up to such incidents when a disaster such as this occurs.

Locals, who were the first to respond to the incident, jumped into the waters and began rescuing people.

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When the garbage dump collapsed in one of the Kondili canals, a vehicle, a scooter, and two motorcycles were swept into it.

"We must try to avoid stacking of garbage mountains", he said in a statement.

The rescue operation was still going on by the time of publication of this report.

The chief minister said that he would also speak to lieutenant governor Anil Baijal and pressure the municipal corporations to do away with such garbage dumps and introduce a modern solid waste management system.

The Ghazipur landfill is the oldest of its kind in the national capital.

He said garbage was disposed of in a "faulty manner". It was started in 1984 and is spread over 29 acres.


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