Used masks pose as threat if not disposed as per norms

ULBs should provide specially marked yellow garbage bags to residents under quarantine to dispose wet and dry waste

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Mask Lady
Picture: Piaxabay

HYDERABAD: Even though the municipal administration and urban development department instructed municipalities to ensure the disposal of masks and safety gear in a scientific manner, GHMC and the surrounding municipalities have turned a blind eye to this order.

The Union ministry of housing and urban affairs (MoHUA) had advised the state governments to treat safety gear like masks and gloves even from non-quarantined households as domestic hazardous waste. Unlike regular waste, masks and safety gear should be treated in incinerators.

Also read: Disposal of biomedical waste is essential: COVID-19

However, after careful verification it was revealed that adequate measures are not being taken to dispose this waste as per the requisite norms. According to guidelines, ULBs should provide specially marked yellow garbage bags to residents under quarantine to dispose wet and dry waste. But the residents of some these containment clusters told TOI that they did not receive any such bags.

Sirisha K from Chandanagar containment cluster, R Inder from Khairtabad containment cluster, Abdul Azeem from Shaikpet cluster and Abdul Kashaf from Old Malakpet containment cluster said that they did not receive any bags to dispose the waste.

But a GHMC official said, “We have distributed covers and the waste from containment zones is not being treated along with regular waste. The masks are also being disposed as per norms. We have also equipped the sanitation workers with safety gear.”