Delhi Slum Drowning in Plastic as Environment Day Focuses on India

Delhi Slum Drowning in Plastic as Environment Day Focuses on India: A sea of plastic spreads from side to side, in the whole New Delhi slum of Taimur Nagar, a symbol of the grime and waste that makes the Indian capital one of the world’s most polluted cities.

The plastic bottles, bags, food wrappers and other detritus have gushed out of a drain which ends up in the shanty, leaving foul-smelling sewer water clogging in the roads of the city.

Street dogs, cows, and goats munch the plastic waste as toddlers run around which is now trying to retrieve water bottles and the footballs.

India is to be the focus of World Environment Day on Tuesday, but it is far from the minds of the long-suffering inhabitants of Taimur Nagar.

“You can see how bad the conditions are here. It’s completely choked with plastic,” said Bhola Ram, shaking his head.

Taimur Nagar is one of the several slums of the national capital, Delhi and the innumerable number of the other Indian cities struggling to cope with waste, in India, predominantly the plastic pollution which is touted as the crucial theme of World Environment Day 2018.

A plastic hell

But in the Taimur Nagar, a sweeping look over underlines the challenges of the nation, which faces with its waste.

The country India generates around 5.6 million tonnes of plastic waste once a year, as per the government figures, with Delhi declared amongst the worst cities for the plastic consumption.

In 2009, the city already banned plastic bags, and afterward expanded it to all plastic packaging and single-use disposable plastic.

But the ban is rarely enforced. Plastic bags are still using by the residents of the national capital, for carrying vegetables, fruit, meat and restaurant takeaways.

The Taimur Nagar’s residents know little because of the hazards of non-biodegradable plastic in order to know about the water supply and the animals sat around.

Used to the filth, all inhabitants speak that they are resigned to their fate.

“It’s like living in hell. You can see there is plastic garbage everywhere. We are poor and we have no choice but to live and die here,” said, by a waste dealer, Shreepal Singh.

Conditions were always not so bad.

“When I came here 40 years ago the drain had clean water. The area was not so dirty. But as more and more people started living here, things have gone worse,” said, a mother of 3, Saroj Sharma.

Grimy water from sewers enters homes, and in the rainy season, with families having to cope with the mud and stench.

“My granddaughter keeps falling sick. All the children here frequently miss school because they are down with diarrhea or malaria,” said by Birambati Devi, housewife, because pigs feasted on a stinking garbage dump nearby.

Taimur Nagar is squeezed in between upper scale housing developments lined with classy houses, the underbelly of Delhi that remains hidden from main roads.

Its dangerous conditions narrate the sad story of India’s lopsided economic growth and decades of the negligence, in spite a pledge by Narendra Modi, the honorable Prime Minister, to clean up the nation by the time his term ends in 2019.

Asia’s third-largest economy, India, had 14 of the world’s 15 worst cities for dirty air as per the recent study of the World Health Organization survey.

Delhi improved its ranking to sixth and declared one of the most polluted cities in 2014.

“I don’t think the city will ever get cleaned. The conditions will never improve,” said Sallu Chowdhary, who wore a black mask as he set out for college.

“No one is serious about this problem, not even the locals who have to suffer every day.”

India is to organize beach cleanups, an exhibition of green technology and art installations — which can be regarded as the symbols of its growing economic clout.

Rajagopalan Vasudevan, the one engineer, has developed a process where plastic waste which is shredded up and used in the new roads also.