Indiscriminate dumping of garbage beneath the Mouchak-Moghbazar flyover on DIT Road has become a source of untold suffering for the local people and commuters.
It is impossible for a person to stand for a moment at the spot, on the way to Malibagh rail crossing from Mouchak intersection in the capital, due to the unpleasant smell emitting from the huge pile of garbage.
Household wastes of the residents of the adjacent areas, including Malibagh, Bakshi Bagh, Gulbagh, Shantibagh and Indrapuri, are dumped there on the road, although there is no dustbin of the city corporation at the place.
Locals alleged that pedestrians and passengers of vehicles are forced to cover up their noses while passing the spot to get rid of the bad odour continuously coming out of the garbage, turning the environment unhealthy and polluting the air of the entire area.
They said the open air garbage dumping spot is causing sufferings to people for the last 4-5 years, but the city corporation is yet to work out a solution to the problem.
Faruk Hasan, who has been running a tea stall beside the garbage dumping spot since 2018, told The Business Standard, "I am witness to an uncountable number of motorcycle accidents here. The accidents occur frequently as the dumped garbage has narrowed down the road to less than half of its width. During the rainy season every year, the rotten household waste spreads all over the road creating water-logging even after a little rain."
"But the city corporation authorities do not pay heed to the regular complaints of the locals," he alleged.
After every three-four days, he continued, the city corporation workers come and take away the garbage on waste-carrying trucks.
Shariful Islam, a local regular pedestrian on the road, said, "We cannot walk on this side of the road due the bad odour. In the rainy season, the entire road gets flooded by garbage. The situation has worsened so much that it is difficult for anyone to stand there even for a minute due to the unpleasant smell."
Local residents have carried out protest programmes, demanding relocation of the dumping spot from time to time, but in vain.
"The authorities have not solved this problem till now. It seems that the city corporation is reluctant to resolve the issue," said Tutu Islam, salesman at a motor parts selling shop beside the road.
The garbage dumping spot is located in Dhaka south city corporation Ward Number-12.
KM Mamun Rashid Shuvro, the present councillor of this ward, told TBS, "The household wastes of the whole ward-12 and part of ward-19 are dumped at this place. It is not a specific garbage dumping spot of the city corporation. The Malibah intersection is the proposed garbage dumping spot for ward-12. The corporation is delaying the setting up of the secondary transparent station (STS), or dumping structure, there. That is why we are temporarily using this place as a dumping ground."
In 2020, Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) Mayor Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh said, "One STS will be set up in each of the 65 wards of DSCC, and garbage dumping on open space will not be allowed. Garbage collectors will start collecting garbage from homes from 6pm every day; and by 10pm, the STS would be filled up with the wastes."
But even after two years, establishing STS in all the wards has not been completed.
Md Shafiullah Siddique Bhuiyan, executive engineer of waste management department of DSCC, said, "Managing the land to set up the STS in Malibagh was a problem. For this reason, the garbage of the area is dumped on the DIT Road under the Malibagh flyover. But now we have succeeded in managing the land at Malibagh intersection. The STS will be set up within the next few months."
We have already set up STS in 51 areas in the DSCC. The work for setting up STS in 22 more spots will start after 4-5 months. The STS at Malibagh would be set up then, he claimed.