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Amenities space turned into junkyard, courtesy PMC
Pooja Agarwal | Wednesday, 3 August 2016 AT 08:34 PM IST
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Pune: An open space in the middle of residential properties has turned into a junkyard thanks to the PMC.

The residents of Eisha Empire, a society in Hadapsar are left aggrieved  as they claim the Pune Municipal Corporation has turned their front yard into a dumping ground. In just last 2 years, there have been two fires in the junkyard, they informed.

"The first fire was in 2014 and the second one in 2015. Both the times, it started in the middle of the night and caught us unaware. The junkyard is so close to the building that we had to empty some of the flats. The fire brigade came from the opposite opening so we were left to fend for ourselves" says S G Gavimath, a resident of Eisha emapire.

The builder had provided a square area to the PMC to turn into a public space. However, the PMC started dumping scrap like hand-carts, tyres, wires etc in the space, turning it into a junkyard. The area in surrounded by The Eisha Empire society on one side, another society 'Jain Township' and a vegetable market.

View of the junkyard from the terrace of Eisha Empire

The black soot from the fire can be seen on the walls of the buildings in 'Jain Township'.

The residents, over a period of two years, have complained to the authorities through various ways but the only reply they get is that until the scrap is auctioned, the matter will not be resolved.

Thanks to the waste-dumping, the place has also become a breeding ground for insects. "At least two people in every building are suffering from chikungunya. Snakes have been spotted roaming in the junkyard" says Gavimath.

After the fire, the PMC pushed the further inside instead of removing it. However, it is still very close to the society's fence and is clearly visible from the wires above the wall.

The junkyard has also created issues between the vegetable vendors and the society residents.

The vegetable vendors were told by the PMC that they could put up their market in the area once the junkyard is cleared. However, as the space is not cleared as yet, the market is now outside of the society creating severe traffic jams. "Those coming to the market, park their vehicles, in the front of the main gate of the society blocking the entrance. A few days back, a resident while entering the society hit a bike wrongly parked in front of the gate. The bike owner came with several men inside the society and vandalised the property" says Nazeer Mohammed, another resident of Eisha Empire.  

The vegetable vendors have approached the PMC several times asking for any update. According to Jabber Shah Syed, a vegetable vendor outside the society, "In 2013, the PMC told us that we will be able to shift from the roadside. However, the scrap hasn't been cleared since then. We feel that the encroachment department of the corporation has encroached into our market space".

According to Asst Municipal Commissioner, SV Gaikwad, "the amenities space is being used to dump scrap as the PMC doesn't have enough space. We have received several complaints from the residents and we are also aware that there have been two fire incidents, hence we proposed in the General Body meeting that this space must be converted into a vegetable market. Hence the vegetable vendors who have encroached the handewadi road will be rehabilitated, reducing traffic congestion."

Corporator Farukh Inamdar, informs "Approval to auction the scrap has been granted in the GB. We will try and auction the scrap in a month's time and then shift the market in the space."

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