Pune: Residents of Punawale, Tathawade, Wakad and Ravet Unite to Halt Proposed Garbage Depot

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Varad Bhatkhande

Ravet, 3rd October 2023: A bike rally has been scheduled in Punawale on November 5th (Sunday) to voice opposition to the proposed garbage depot in the area.

The bike rally will commence from the 18 Latitude Mall in Punawale and is intended to protest the establishment of a garbage depot in Punawale. The rally organizers aim to unite residents from Punawale, Tathawade, Wakad, Ravet, and nearby societies in a collective demonstration against the proposed project.

Citizens are urged to participate in the bike rally, demonstrating their strong opposition to the planned garbage depot in Punawale.

Punawale, home to a population of over 1 lakh people, is adorned with a beautiful forest area adjacent to it. The Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) has proposed the establishment of a garbage dump in this region, which would entail the destruction of the forest area.

Residents of Punawale, Tathawade, Ravet, Wakad, and Hinjawadi have expressed serious concerns regarding the decision made by PCMC to initiate a solid waste management project in Punawale by December 2023.

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Notably, when the solid waste management project was sanctioned in 2008, the urbanization in these areas was significantly less, with a population of around ten thousand. However, presently, Punawale has undergone extensive urbanization, with a population exceeding 1 lakh. Moreover, the PCMC did not account for the westward direction of the proposed solid waste management project, where winds predominantly move eastward throughout most of the year.

This decision raises concerns over health impacts, not only for Punawale but also for other heavily urbanized areas such as Tathawade, Wakad, Ravet, and the Hinjawadi IT Park, collectively affecting the lives of over 5 lakh residents. These regions host large-scale housing projects, educational institutions, hospitals, and various commercial activities, with proximity to IT parks like Hinjawadi and Eon West.

The proximity of the garbage depot to these heavily urbanized areas raises concerns about water, air, and soil pollution, impacting daily lives. Adding to the challenges, the proposed garbage depot would be approximately 1km from the Ravet bund, a source from which the PCMC and the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation draw water to supply to the entire city.

PCMC aims to commence the garbage depot by December 2023, necessitating the deaths of millions of trees across 22 hectares of Punawale’s Kate Wasti forest.

Efforts are underway to cancel the impending Punawale solid waste management project to safeguard the residents of Punawale, Tathawade, Ravet, Wakad, and Hinjawad.