Live bombs, war scrap lying in container depots
Hazardous Waste In Delhi, Mumbai & Raj, Warns CAG
New Delhi: At least 469 containers of hazardous waste, including live bombs, war material scrap and dangerous chemical waste, have been found at inland container depots (ICDs) of the customs and container freight stations (CFSs) in Rajasthan, Tughlakabad in Delhi, and Mumbai, a Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) audit report has revealed.
Many of the live bombs entered as “shredded scrap” from Bandar Abbas port in Iran and other places, which are believed to be the remains from the US war on Iraq and Syria and from Afghanistan. Some of the imported containers seized by the customs are waiting to be destroyed, while many have already reached foundries in Ghaziabad and Moradabad for the extraction of brass and other metals, the report says.
“The audit found in test checks at 85 ICDs and CFSs (at loading ports), as on 31st March 2017, that there were 469 containers of hazardous waste lying undisposed from periods ranging from one to 17 years,” said the audit report tabled in Parliament on December 8.
These containers, many of which have been abandoned by importers, included live bombs, war material scrap in three Inland Container Depots (ICDs) in Rajasthan, 92 containers of used tyres, metal scarp and hazardous chemicals in a Container Freight Station (CFS) under Mumbai Customs Zone II and 15 containers of hazardous cargo in ICD Tughlakabad and 50 containers of mixed waste in ICD Moradabad, according to the CAG.
The auditor has raised concerns at the absence of rules for re-exporting of containers with hazardous waste that resulted in them lying undisposed.
There are 80 active ICDs in the country handling annual import and export worth Rs 4.27 lakh crore. Unclaimed cargos with war remains are dangerous to foreign trade and even a small fire may cause explosions.
Data collected by the CAG on undisposed containers from 80 ICDs/CFSs has revealed that 7,877 containers have been occupying storage area of 1.17 lakh square metres. “Out of these, 3,397 containers were pending disposal for more than three years,” it said.
Full report on www.toi.in