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A major fire breaks out at Delhi’s Ghazipur garbage dump, engulfing the region in smoke

The Ghazipur landfill has long been an environmental problem, reaching a towering height of 65 meters in 2019, just eight meters shorter than the iconic Qutub Minar. Past incidents, such as a 2017 collapse that claimed two lives, have underlined the dangers associated with the landfill

A significant fire broke out at Ghazipur dumping ground in east Delhi on Sunday evening, officials said.

The Delhi Fire Brigade (DFS) received a call about the fire at 5.22 pm and two fire tenders were sent to the spot. Efforts are currently being made to extinguish the flames.

“We received a call about the fire at 5.22 pm. Two fire tenders were pressed into service. Efforts are on to douse the fire. Local police have been informed,” a DFS official said.

Besides the fire brigade, excavators of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) were deployed to control the fire.

The incident has drawn criticism from the Bharatiya Janata Party, which claims that despite promises to clear the Ghazipur dumping ground by December 31 last year, the Aam Aadami Party government has failed to keep its promise.

Delhi BJP spokesperson Praveen Shankar Kapoor said that due to the fire at the dumping site, smoke has engulfed the entire area and caused inconvenience to residents and businesses alike.

Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) chief Jayant Singh, who was visiting, took to social media platforms to highlight the failure of waste management. “I just drove past a terrible fire that engulfed the Ghazipur dump! Such fire outbreaks are difficult to control and highlight the systemic failure of our waste management policies and practices,” he wrote on X.

The Ghazipur landfill has long been an environmental problem, reaching a towering height of 65 meters in 2019, just eight meters shorter than the iconic Qutub Minar. Past incidents, such as a 2017 collapse that killed two people, have underscored the landfill’s dangers.

In 2022 alone, three fire incidents were recorded at the Ghazipur landfill, including one on March 28, which took more than 50 hours to extinguish.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had earlier promised to resolve the dumping problem by December 31 last year, ahead of the 2022 MCD elections. However, instead of reducing waste, additional waste has accumulated at the site.