The residents of Mahalunge in Pune continue to grapple with the persistent issue of construction waste dumping in area, which has resulted in environmental damage and the risk of flooding. Last year, the dumping of debris led to severe flooding, with water entering approximately 25 houses in the Aundh-Baner ward area. Despite constant complaints from residents to the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), authorities have yet to take significant action.
The accumulation of debris, primarily originating from open plots near Kirti Elegant society, remains a major concern for residents. The debris has started rolling downhill, damaging the society's compound wall. Citizens fear that the impending rainfall could wash away the debris, leading to further blockage of the drainage system and sewage water can mix up with drinking water resource.
Residents have expressed their distress over the disappearance of a previously existing water pond and the subsequent disturbance to the local environment and biodiversity. Dumping activity has been observed in the area for the past two to three years, with garbage and debris being deposited in an open plot almost every alternate day. The pile-up of debris has reached a height of approximately 4 to 5 feet.
Widespread waterlogging was reported last year
Last year's heavy rainfall exposed the inefficiency of the drainage systems, leading to widespread waterlogging and flooding across the city. It has been revealed that landowners in the area allowed the dumping of debris on their land in exchange for financial compensation. Subsequently, the plot owners sell the debris to other parties, maximizing their profits.
Residents have also voiced concerns about other civic issues in Mahalunge, including open garbage dumping, potholes, traffic congestion, encroachments, and open drain chambers. They are hopeful that the ward office will take note of their grievances and initiate necessary action.
Mira Saheb Patil, a Gram Panchayat official, stated that the area now falls under the jurisdiction of the PMC, and the issue had been previously addressed when it was within their authority.
Surendra Jawale, an official from the Health Department of the Aundh-Baner ward office, acknowledged receiving the complaints and assured residents that their team would promptly inspect the area and take necessary action.
Environmental expert Shailaja Deshpande emphasized the importance of authorities and local residents planning to preserve natural resources and create environmentally friendly structures without disrupting the ecological balance.
Civic officials have responded to the concerns raised by residents and have promised to take immediate action to resolve the ongoing issue of construction debris dumping in Mahalunge.