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Soon, an app for Mumbai residents to file complaints on air pollution, track action | Mumbai News

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is developing an app on which Mumbai residents can register complaints on air pollution and also track the action taken by the authorities against violators.

On Thursday, during an interaction with mediapersons, Mumbai’s municipal commissioner and state-appointed administrator Iqbal Singh Chahal announced that within the next one month, an app would be launched. “By next month, we will be launching an application through which citizens will be able to check as to how many construction sites have been issued stop-work notices as well as action taken by the BMC against those found in violation of the mitigation guidelines. They will also be able to monitor the AQI levels through this app,” Chahal said.

Civic officials told The Indian Express that the app will geo-tag the locations where action has been taken and also keep an online data of complaints registered and action taken. The information will be available on a dashboard in the app.

“The objective of this app is to ensure citizens also participate in the whole process of penalising violators. We are facing this issue of air pollution also due to weather-related phenomenon and it is going to stay for sometime. Therefore, a citywide campaign needs to be carried out to ensure all the man-made sources are identified and busted by the authorities,” a civic official said.

The Indian Express, from October 20, has been publishing its series, ‘Death by Breath’, reporting on various issues on air pollution in Mumbai. Following this, the BMC and Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) swung into action and issued a slew of guidelines.

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The Bombay High Court on October 31 took suo motu notice of The Indian Express and other reports and, during a hearing on the matter on November 10, BMC’s counsel said the civic body, within the shortest possible time, would create a special website and app and also publish emergency mobile numbers for listing complaints on air pollution.

Till now, the BMC has sent close to 1,000 intimation letters to several contractors involved with various private real-estate and government infrastructure projects, asking them to follow the BMC’s dust-mitigation norms. Earlier this week, the BMC had also sent stop-work notices to the contractor of Mumbai Metro 3 project at Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) for flouting air pollution norms.

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Besides the BMC, the MPCB has also started taking action against violators and, over the past few weeks, sent notices to units owned by Larsen and Toubro, CEAT, JSW Green, Rashtriya Chemicals etc.

“The basic skeleton of this app is in the developing stage and the main interface is likely to be approved by next week. After the basic version is readied, the pilot will start from a few municipal wards before it is launched officially,” the official said.

Meanwhile, the BMC on Saturday said in case anyone is found burning municipal waste, then a complaint about it should be made on WhatsApp on the civic helpline number, also known as the Chief Minister Swachh Mumbai Helpline number — 8169681697. Residents have been urged to attach a photograph along with the complaint. The BMC said open burning of garbage is an offence under environmental laws and the Indian Penal Code.

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