Gujarat: Farmers, NGO protest dumping of chemical waste, demand probe
At least two memorandums were submitted, including one to Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, against Hindusthan Chemicals Company, on Thursday for allegedly disposing of toxic chemical wastes in open at Vankuth village in Bharuch district.
Gujarat Khedut Samaj on Thursday submitted a memorandum to the Surat district collector, urging the administration to permanently shut down the Olpad unit of the company for their alleged involvement in illegal disposal of hazardous chemical wastes on an open land in a tribal village of Bharuch. Brackish Water Research Centre, an NGO, has also given a memorandum to the Chief Minister, urging him to take strict actions against the company and demanding a CID investigation into the matter.
In its memorandum, the Khedut Samaj mentioned that the company produces cyanide. The local residents of Olpad taluka had earlier raised the issue of illegal disposal of toxic wastes without treatment by the company.
A few days ago, some tribal youngsters of Vankuth village in Umalla taluka of Bharuch district had caught three trucks, which were disposing of the hazardous wastes directly on an open land on the outskirts, as per the memorandum.
The villagers then called the NGO Brackish Water Research Centre and Khedut Samaj and later informed Ankleshwar police, which registered a case against the three truck drivers. Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) officials also reached the spot and examined the toxic wastes and started a probe. The GPCB found that the toxic wastes were brought from Hindusthan Chemicals Company at Olpad in Surat district and were disposed of in Bharuch, said the memorandum.
The Khedut Samaj demanded strict actions against the truck owners and drivers, company directors and others involved.
Khedut Samaj president Jayesh Patel said the disposal of such toxic waste puts lives of the villagers in danger. “Around 20,000 people stay in nearby areas of the company in Olpad. We have demanded that the district collector should order permanent shut down of the company. A case against the company is also with National Green Tribunal.”