The rampant disposal of waste into surrounding drains by meat, fish and poultry shops in Thimphu’s vegetable market area is creating an awful smell and health hazard say residents of the locality.
“Some meat vendors dump their waste meat alongside the road and also into the drains and scavenging strays bring the rotting waste right to our doorsteps,” said Sonam Wangmo a resident of the vegetable market area.
Without stringent provision for meat waste management and monitoring, residents find themselves in a hapless situation. “Despite increased environmental awareness, people dump the waste meat everywhere,” said Dechen who resides near the centenary farmers market. “We have been complaining about the odor since a long time.”
Another resident Jigme Dorji said the Thromde (city municipality) must monitor the place constantly and penalize vendors who dump their waste all over the place.
“Nobody from the relevant organizations monitor the area, and the place is now very suitable for everyone to dump their waste,” Jigme Dorji said. “The place filled with garbage and human feces and during the day the odor gets so intense and we cannot even eat food.”
A dozen of meat shops in Thimphu also dump their waste into the Wangchu River everyday and so do residents and shopkeepers of the vegetable market area.
The National Environment Commission, Thimphu Thromde and other organizations looking into waste management are clueless about the situation. The residents living in the area are of the opinion that laws are not being enforced.
As per the Livestock department waste meat should be disposed properly to prevent the spread of disease such as anthrax, rabies, botulism and Salmonellosis. According to Thromde official, the place is monitored from time to time. “Meat vendors are responsible for the illegal disposal of meat waste,” he said.