Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy, who is also the district-in-charge Minister for Bangalore, cracked the whip on BBMP officials for mismanagement of solid waste disposal. Chairing a review meeting on Monday, Mr. Reddy gave them a fortnight to clear garbage in the city or face suspension.

Joint Commissioners of eight zones of the BBMP, chief engineers and senior officials participated in the meeting.

Speaking to The Hindu after the meeting, Mr. Reddy said two issues were being dealt with as top priority: roads and garbage. “While road works have been going on, garbage clearance and disposal has not been happening effectively. Bills in the name of waste management are being generated, but no work seems to be happening,” he said.

Mr. Reddy also raised the issue of implementation of the ban on plastic less than 40 microns. “We have observed that plastic forms more than 50 per cent of the garbage. Plastic below 40 microns are still being used. I have directed officials to close the factories of manufacturers, stop the inflow of such plastic from outside Karnataka and cancel licence of malls or shops that are giving out the banned variety of plastic,” he said.

The Minister is also said to have taken to task officials who have been using elections as an excuse to not do their duties. Officials said the Minister also directed the health and engineering departments to coordinate regarding waste segregation.

The matter of BVG, the company entrusted with waste management in Yelahanka zone, cropped up during the meeting. Though the civic agency paid Rs. 24 crore to the company, it later slapped a fine of Rs. 1.25 crore for not doing the work well. However, BVG is said to have got a stay order due to which the civic body cannot call off the contract, officials informed the Minister.

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