Brahmapuram waste plant is situated in Kochi, Ernakulam, Kerala which is the only metro city In the state of Kerala. The population of the same city are millions and still, local self-government bodies were negligent about the waste management of the city.
There were piles of waste collected from households and various shops dumped onto the vast area of ground in the place called Brahmapuram. Bhrahmapuram landfill is located on 110 acres of land owned by Kochi Corporation at Bhrahmapuram in Vadavukot-Puthankurish Panchayat, 17 km away from Kochi city.
The waste from different sources was not even effectively collected by dividing them into biodegradable or non-biodegradable wastes. This led to a situation in which the wastes could not be turned into compost or recycled. A huge default on the part of the government has been observed through the day-to-day activities done by them.
On March 2nd of 2023, a huge fire broke out in the waste piles of Brahmapuram. It is not the first time the yard is experiencing a fire. The 110 acres of the waste pile have been catching fire at similar times every year without any specific reasons.
The corporation has been showing listless responses to the same issue. The smoke that is being emitted through the fire contains hazardous contents which will be present in the atmosphere forever, causing damage to the ozone layer and several other aspects of the environment.
The fire lasted for 11 days and affected the residents of the nearby area to a huge extent. The residents reported breathing difficulties during the emission of the smoke was found out. Even though the fire was tried to be controlled by the fire force and other authorities, the corporation could not come up with a sufficient answer.
The fire was again reported a few days after the issue was somehow settled down. It was even brought into a suspicious talk that if the fire was created by someone to get rid of the waste pile. Fire has a huge impact on the environment in several ways. The burnt substances are not biodegradable or eco-friendly molecules.
They can cause severe health – physical and mental issues for the people who breathe the polluted air. Like the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki are suffering, there are instances and chances observed by authorities that the waste pile fire .ay affect the people in an enormous manner.
Waste burning is a significant source of dangerous carcinogens like dioxins and furans, and black carbon, a short-lived climate pollutant that contributes to climate change, increased melting in polar regions due to the deposition of soot and black carbon on snow and ice, and numerous human health issues.
The National Green Tribunal slapped the civic body with a fine of ₹100 crores, and the Division Bench of the Kerala High Court initiated a court-monitored review of the waste management system after a suo motu petition from the court in the light of the happenings taken place.
No authority should be negligent in waste management in any area. It should be done by conserving the environment and its resources. Also, the protection of human life should be kept with primary importance. All these should never lose their importance while treating or developing society.
The emission of harmful substances will result in air pollution which could affect living beings in long-term damage. The diseases could be heart disease, lung cancer, and respiratory diseases such as emphysema. The chemicals could also affect the brain, kidneys, liver and even the respiratory system of humans.
The right to a clean and pollution-free environment is a fundamental right which is guaranteed under the Indian Constitution in Article 21. Through the horrible experience of fire breaking out at the Brahmapuram plant, there is a clear breach of Fundamental rights.
“According to Stockholm Declaration on the human environment, 1972, right to the environment means right to life itself” it is mentioned In MC Mehta v UOI. In Damodar Rao v special officer, municipal corporation of Hyderabad court held that Article 48A of the constitution imposes an obligation on the government and courts to protect the environment.
Therefore, the breach of Fundamental rights affects the public in an enormous manner, which makes them question the basic right available to them in the country. It is the primary responsibility of the government to safeguard the rights of its citizens. No rights should be rejected or neglected by the citizens of any country except in exceptional circumstances. Every life matters and should be valued with reasonable care and love and true application of the Constitution and rights are very well required.
https://www.ccacoalition.org/en/activity/open-waste-burning-prevention#:~:text=Waste%20burning%20is%20a%20significant,and%20numerous%20human%20health%20issues (last visited on 29/03/2023 Time- 22.16)
https://www-thehindu-com.cdn.ampproject.org/v/s/www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/fire-breaks-out-at-brahmapuram-again-disaster-management-authorities-say-no-cause-for-concern/article66664945.ece/amp/?amp_gsa=1&_js_v=a9&usqp=mq331AQIUAKwASCAAgM%3D#amp_tf=From%20%251%24s&aoh=16801106944781&referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com&share=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.thehindu.com%2Fnews%2Fcities%2FKochi%2Ffire-breaks-out-at-brahmapuram-again-disaster-management-authorities-say-no-cause-for-concern%2Farticle66664945.ece (last visited on 29/03/2023 )
- AIR 1988 SC 2217
- AIR 1887A.P 171