KATHMANDU, June 27: Kalimati vegetable market has been in need of civic attention for years. Official apathy has turned the vegetable market, which fulfill 70 percent of the total vegetable demand of the capital, into a filthy and stinking place. More so when the monsoon arrives.
“Garbage is collected twice a day. However, they garbage collectors do not clean the place properly,” complained Taradevi Mishra, a stall keeper in the market. “My nine-year-old daughter has received feet infection due to the filth,” she added.
“I pay Rs 10,000 per month for this stall. However, I have to suffer huge losses during the rainy season as filth lies strewn around my stall. Customers are reluctant to visit my stall,” laments Imroj Khan who hails from Chautara, Rautahat.
The market imports over 700 tons of vegetables every day and generates around 15 tons of waste.
However, there is no proper arrangement for sanitation in the market.
“The open drain hole has not been repaired for years. In addition to rain, filthy water from the drain collects everywhere and remains there until the sun dries it up,” said Sanokaji Maharjan a vegetable wholesaler. “The stink of filth becomes unbearable during daytime.”
Talking to Republica Arjun Prasad Aryal, executive director of Kalimati Fruits and vegetables market committee (KFVMC) said the issue of sanitation would be resolved soon. “We have already given the responsibility to a private party,” he said.
According to Aryal the market has also become filthy due to lack of proper dumping site. “The problem would not have become this serious had the waste been properly managed.”
However, a regular customer at the market Sita Bajgain begs to differ. “It is sheer negligence of the concerned authority that the main vegetable market of the capital is in such a sorry state. Cannot they clean up the area three to four times a day so that it looks clean?” she fumed.