It is purely the result of mismanagement

Bangaloreans are experiencing a sense of déjà vu as the city is in the grip of another garbage crisis, the third in the last two years.

The assurances of the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) to solve the garbage disposal problem by taking up scientific processing of waste have not fructified.

The city generates around 4,000 tonnes of garbage every day. Of this, around 1,800 tonnes was being sent to Mandur landfill. With the communities living around the Mandur landfill demanding that the BBMP stop sending waste there since Sunday, the BBMP was forced to send waste to the landfills in Doddaballapur, S. Bingipura and Lakshmipura.

Mismanagement

The crisis is purely the result of mismanagement and the BBMP dragging its feet on various waste management projects, including a waste to power project proposed to be set up at Subbarayanapalya on the outskirts of the city by Hanjer Biotech Energies Pvt. Ltd., a private company.

Mayor B.S. Sathyanarayana announced the project with much fanfare and even took councillors on a field trip to Salem to visit the existing facility of the private company around a year ago. Proposed to be set up on a 10-acre plot, the plant would have processed 800 tonnes of mixed waste to generate compost, plastic ingots and refuse-derived fuel from mixed waste.

However, the contract was subsequently cancelled due to inordinate delays in setting up the unit.

Though several other measures have been suggested for effective solid waste management, including setting up 16 biomethanisation plants, the BBMP is yet to fully implement them.

The solid waste management expert committee suggested that the segregated waste be processed at the zonal or Assembly constituency level, so that only inert waste is taken to the landfills.

However, the BBMP has not strictly implemented the segregation of waste at source and as a result, mixed waste is reaching the landfills, much to the chagrin of the communities.

The issue has also taken on a political colour. On Monday, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah squarely blamed the previous BJP government for the garbage crisis in the city.

He reiterated that city in-charge Minister R. Ramalinga Reddy was trying to convince the communities around the landfill of the need to allow dumping for another six to eight months.

He convened a meeting on the same day to discuss the garbage crisis. Mr. Reddy, the Mayor and BBMP Commissioner M. Lakshminarayan and senior officials were present.

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