Money makes garbage disappear
NEW DELHI: The Delhi Municipal Corporation (MCD) seems to have found a solution to the garbage problem in the city. The magic word is privatisation. Be it garbage dumps, transportation of garbage, sweeping or maintenance of compost plants. All the wings of MCD’s sanitation department are waiting to be privatised for effective garbage management.
There is more good news. MCD’s sanitation staff will besensitised to the latest environmental issues at a new institute called the Institute for Sanitation Engineering. And if the staff is still unable to mend their inefficient ways, citizens will have an opportunity for quick redressal. A mobile grievance centre will start in the constituency of every member of legislative assembly.
Here’s how the MCD plans to go about the job.
Garbage dumps: There are 2,400 dumps in Delhi. Most of them have outlived their utility. The MCD, however, has a solution. It plans to privatise 100 of the existing ones. MCD officials admit privatisation will ensure cleanliness and regular lifting of garbage apart from generating revenue.
Additional commissioner (headquarters) Ramesh Negi says: ‘‘The private operator will pay us Rs 15,000 every month. The corporation will save Rs 30,000 which it spends on transportation.’’ MCD’s original plan is to privatise 315 dumps.
Twenty-five dumps in the city have been privatised and 12 have started functioning. As per the lease, the private operator maintains the dump and transports garbage to the landfill sites. In turn, the operator earns money by putting up advertisement hoardings on the four walls of the dump.
New trucks for disposal: The nauseating sight of garbage spilling trucks on city roads would be passe in another six months. MCD is in the process of a tie-up with the Tatas who will provide over 200 covered trucks.
MCD officials said the decision to purchase trucks was taken after the Supreme Court’s ‘‘municipal solid waste management ruling 2000’’. The court ordered that ‘‘all trucks should be covered to prevent the foul smell from bothering road-users and littering.’’ The new trucks conform to Euro-II emission norms. They would cost Rs 40,000 more than the existing price which is Rs 8 lakh. The company is likely to take the charge of the trucks’ maintenance.
Transportation of garbage: MCD plans to privatise transportation of garbage. Tenders from private contractors have been invited to collect garbage in Rohini and Shahdara zones and transport it to the landfill site. A senior MCD official said the corporation will pay the contractor for removing garbage. The cost will be less than the expenditure currently incurred. ‘‘The corporation spends Rs 40,000 for maintaining each truck every year,’’ the official says.
He said although the MCD has its own fleet of ‘‘outdated trucks,’’ they end up hiring new ones every day because their own vehicles are parked at the workshop.
Sweeping: MCD plans to ‘‘restructure’’ sweeping where sweepers from regularised colonies will be moved to irregularised areas. Negi says: ‘‘The MCD has to provide sanitation facilities to illegal colonies too. We plan to move the sweepers there. A private contractor will clean the colony from where the sweepers are removed.’’
Plastic bags banned
By Our Staff Correspondent
MADIKERI May 15. The Deputy Commissioner has banned use of plastic packing material measuring less than 20 microns in thickness, according to a statement issued here on Wednesday.
The statement said people had been asked not to use plastic packing material, including bags, measuring less than 20 microns in thickness as per the Environmental Act, 1986.
Shopkeepers had been asked not to sell or keep plastic packing items such as bags to prevent pollution.
The rule applied to hotels, bakeries, and other commercial establishments.
A committee had been formed to enforce the order. The committee would inspect shops, hotels, and other business establishments and initiate action against those who violated the order, the statement said.
The statement urged the people to use cotton bags and paper instead of plastic bags.