UT administrator Banwarilal Purohit on Wednesday inaugurated the ₹68-crore legacy waste biomining and land recovery project at the Dadumajra landfill.
The project, which is being partially funded by the central government under the Swachh Bharat Mission 2.0, will target the 7.67 lakh metric tonnes (MT) legacy waste dumped at the site after 2005.
Of the total cost, ₹28.02 crore will be contributed by the Union ministry of housing and urban affairs.
The biomining work has been allotted to a Karnal-based firm, Akanksha Enterprises, that will complete it within 43 months (April 2026).
A total of 12.7 lakh MT legacy waste is to be cleared at the landfill to reclaim over 25 acres of land.
Of this, 5 lakh MT from before 2005 is being biomined under a Smart City project at a cost of ₹33 crore. Initially planned to be completed by May 2021, the project now has an August 2023 deadline, though officials say it may be finished by March 2023.
Addressing the gathering, Purohit said the biomining project will provide huge relief to Dadumajra residents from the foul smell and leachate oozing out of the dump, which had been a major cause of various diseases, flies and dust.
Chandigarh member of Parliament Kirron Kher said the ₹33-crore project to clear 5 MT legacy waste was expected to be completed by March 2023 and the second project will also be completed within the stipulated time frame.
Mayor Sarbjit Kaur said MC was also upgrading the existing solid waste plant at Dadumajra to process more dry and wet waste, adding that it will start functioning by next month.
The Dadumajra dumping site was one of the central issues during last year’s civic body elections. It was also one of the reasons for Chandigarh’s poor performance in the last couple of Swachh Survekshan rankings and has been blamed for serious health issues in the large population living around it.
The ₹33-crore project was launched amid much fanfare in December 2019 by the then UT administrator VP Singh Badnore. While Chandigarh’s daily solid waste generation is around 550-600 MT, most of it is dumped at the landfill without processing. Of the total waste, around 350 MT is wet and 200 MT is dry.