Residents of Jowai, Meghalaya’s West Jaintia Hills district headquarters, held a “lockdown” in the town on 26/04/2022 to protest the ongoing accumulation of garbage and the government’s claimed indifference to waste removal.
From 6 a.m., the several “Dorbar Shnong” (village councils) in Jowai town imposed a 36-hour total lockdown. It was first sponsored by the Dorbar Shnong Tympang lawmusiang after the state government’s three-day deadline to clear the waste expired without action.
The majority of Jowai’s schools and institutions remained closed, with some declaring a half-day holiday. In Jowai Public School, Mooralong, the Indian Council of School Education Examination went on as usual, whereas government offices remained open with no employees present.
Lawshyiap, lawshor, law Sein Raij, and lawthymmei were among the prominent market locations that stayed closed.
Jowai residents wrote to PM Modi informing the unsanitary situation
Meanwhile, local citizen and famous academician OR Shallam wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, informing him of the unsanitary situation in Jowai caused by rubbish stacking and requesting his action.
He expressed his significant worry in the letter about how Jowai town, which has a population of around 3 lakh, was being “deprived and discriminated of its rights to have a permanent rubbish dumping ground as per scientific procedures” and how the state government did not “seriously take up the subject.”
He also stated that the town’s citizens were among those who had actively participated in the Centre’s “Clean India Movement” over the years and that the town had a history of preserving cleanliness and necessary hygiene in all of its residences, and public places, and roadways.
“However, the state government’s failure to establish a permanent scientific garbage treatment plant, on the other hand, has let the town down in its ‘Clean India’ program. Many bodies and even people have filed various petitions and proposals to the state government, but the waste from Jowai has been thrown on its streets until now “He notified the Prime Minister.
“Localities in Jowai town are now enforcing lockdowns in all markets and commercial areas to prevent more garbage from being dumped on the streets and, more importantly, to protest the government’s lack of responsiveness and inaction in providing the town with a permanent garbage scientific treatment plant. The locals had lost hope” according to the letter.
Challanm requested the PM’s intervention on behalf of the citizens of the town to solve the “tragic difficulties confronting Jowai town and to rescue us from the garbage endemic and bring justice and equity to the town in the truest sense of democracy.”