On September 16, 2018, around 400 village residents from Olpad tehsil in Surat gathered to protest against a solid waste disposal plant in Bhandut. They claimed that the 50-acre land selected for the proposed plant by the Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) was productive land and that no consultation was held with them on the matter nor were they provided any compensation by the government. The people use the land for cattle breeding, farming and milk production. They said if the authorities went ahead with the plan, they would take out a huge rally from Jahangirpura to the SMC office on October 1. Although the rally did not happen, some villagers went and spoke with SMC officials, who did not provide them with any assurance, dismissing the land in question as unproductive due to its salinity content. Eight months ago, the National Green Tribunals Pune bench had asked the SMC to shift its solid waste disposal plant from Khajod village within 18 months, as the Khajod dumping site had turned into a major source of pollution, affecting around five lakh people. Subsequently, the SMC had identified three plots of land in Bhandut and Mandroi in Olpad tehsil and in Wankinada in Surat to shift its solid waste disposal site from Khajod.
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Surat Municipal Corporation , National Green Tribunal
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