SHILLONG, Mar 22: The previous Meghalaya United Alliance (MUA) – II regime led by the Congress wanted to turn a proposed landfill site in the outskirts of the city into a tourist destination it was revealed in the state Assembly on Thursday.
Replying during the Question Hour, State Urban Affairs Minister, Hamletson Dohling while informing the House said that the idea of developing the processing and disposal facilities at Umsawli slowed down on August 17, 2017, when a joint inspection was conducted by the then Chief Minister, Dr Mukul Sangma.
“It was decided that since looking at the potential of the site earmarked for the sanitary landfill, the same should instead be developed as a tourist resort or as a facility from tourism perspective,” Dohling told the House.
The Urban Affairs Minister informed that as a follow up to this inspection report a decision to hand over the site to tourism department was taken by the NSTDA committee chaired by the Chief Secretary.
Earlier, Dohling informed the House that three sites have been identified as they comply with Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016.
He said that environmental impact assessment for using the sites for processing and disposal facilities of solid waste will be prepared and presented to the stakeholders and public.
“On obtaining environmental clearance, the land shall be initiated for acquisition after which the waste processing and disposal facilities shall be developed at the final selected site,” the Urban Affairs Minister said.
He also informed that a new compost plant in place of the old one is being constructed under the ADB-MoUD assisted NERCCDIP at a cost of Rs 15.79 crore and the estimated time of completion of the work is Janaury 2019.
Dohling also told the House that the development of a sanitary landfill at the same site is also being taken up over an area of 15000 square meters at an estimated cost of Rs 27.09 crores.
“Phase one of the work over an area of 6500 square meters was completed and commissioned on October 2, 2017. The same is being used at present for non-degradable waste,” the Urban Affairs Minister said.
Meanwhile, Dohling informed that phase two which cost Rs 19.33 crores is in progress and about 55 percent is over and scheduled for completion in December 2018.