Garbage dump near Kundalahalli Lake on fire again

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BENGALURU: In what appeared to be a continuing problem, another major fire broke out at 6.20pm on Wednesday at the Kundalahalli garbage dumping yard, which is spread across 10 acres, adjacent to the Kundalahalli Lake.

As reported earlier, the dump yard has seen multiple fires in the past month, with locals forced to call the fire department multiple times a week. On Wednesday, Akhilesh Mishra, a resident, said: “A foul and burnt smell filled offices and we could see dark smoke. We immediately rushed out to find that it was the dump yard on fire again.”

The yard belongs to private landowners who have now transferred the property to a political leader who plans to build an IT park there. Residents allege that the politician’s men are setting the garbage on fire in order to clear the land for the proposed IT park.

The security guard of the dumping yard told TOI that there are four homes of ragpickers who segregate waste and sell at the yard, and that one of them may have set the fire. “When I saw the place around 5:30pm, there was nothing and suddenly the fire became big,” he said.

About a decade ago, the plot was an open land where children would come and play, but now it has turned into garbage mount, which is as tall as a seven-storey building, with BBMP garbage trucks dumping waste there, said the residents.

“It’s not the residents who dump waste here, but the commercial establishments and others,” claimed Murthy Subramanian, another resident.

“This has become routine for us over the past 15 days as security guards do not monitor the place properly. We try to douse the fire, but it keeps burning as the fire is deep below due to layers of garbage. This mount has to be cleared soon,” said firefighter R Nagesh.