Our waste is our resource

28 Nov 2019

With a view to addressing enormous amounts of waste being generated and dumped on road sides and open spaces, the president, project development officer, elected representatives and staff of Bashettihalli gram panchayat (GP) in Bangalore Rural district of Karnataka are making concerted efforts to manage solid and liquid waste.

The move is in keeping with the ODF plus parameters outlined by the nationwide campaign – Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin (SBM-G). The parameters include regular availability and usage of toilets, management of solid and liquid waste, cleanliness of water resources, maintenance of public and household toilets, menstrual hygiene management and awareness on personal hygiene.

Previously, owing to the unhygienic condition of the villages in the Bashettihalli GP, vector-borne diseases such as Malaria and Dengue as also Cholera were prevalent. Further, because of its location close to Bengaluru city, the Government of Karnataka had established the Bashettihalli industrial area within the GP and the panchayat headquarters are semi-urban in nature. All these factors have contributed to generation of excessive waste.

After experiencing repeated outbreaks of diseases and ugly scenes of dumped wastes on the streets, the panchayat decided to address the problem of waste by establishing a solid waste management unit. On their request, the Deputy Commissioner allotted 1.09 acres of land and a SLWM unit was established at a cost of Rs. 95.09 lakhs.

As far as finances were concerned, Rs. 20 lakhs from SBM-G funds, Rs. 22.25 lakhs from MGNREGA and Rs. 52.84 lakhs from panchayat were earmarked for the project. To promote SLWM activities, all elected representatives are regularly involved in increasing public awareness on segregation at source. Further, each household has been provided two dustbins each. The segregated waste is collected from each house on a daily basis.

To sustain the programme the panchayat ensures regular collection of source segregated waste from each house; continue IEC activities so that people follow the three Rs (reduce, recycle, recover) of waste management. It will also ensure proper recycling of waste leading to income generation for the panchayat. A fine has been announced for violations.

To help with these tasks, every household is charged Rs.30 per month and every commercial establishment Rs. 50 per month as service charge.

The 11 villages of the GP (Bashettihalli, Bisuvanahalli, Kasavanahalli, Varadanahalli, Yellupura, Arehalli Guddadahalli, Obadenahalli, Adinarayana Hosahalli, Moparahalli, Nagadenhalli, Raghunathapura) are spread across an areas of 1859.968 sq.kms of plain land where there is no perennial source of water. The average rain fall is 5.00 MM per year and the ground water level is at 1400 feet depth as a result of which water is hard. The main crop is Ragi (millet) along with horticulture crop such as Grapes and Bananas.

[ Source: Aparajita Suman, Consultant, MDWS ]

[ The Blog was first published on https://sbmgramin.wordpress.com/ ]

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