Residents remain clueless about project launched by the government just last week
Even though the zero garbage programme was formally launched amid much fanfare by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah last week in 22 wards in the city, the programme has not taken off at the ward level.
A quick recce among the residents of the wards revealed that they were completely unaware of the programme. This, when the motto of the programme was to enlist active engagement of residents to ensure segregation of waste in the households. The programme also promised a clean neighbourhood without unsightly garbage heaps.
Many residents of Gandhinagar and Rajmahal Guttahalli, two of the 22 wards identified for the programme, pointed to the heaps of garbage lying unattended in their areas. Moreover, many were clueless about the programme and pointed out that the civic body had not carried out any awareness programmes there.
Raju Venkataram (35) who works at a hotel in Rajmahal Guttahalli said no information was provided to them on waste segregation. “We continue to dump all our waste — kitchen waste, plastic and paper — in one bin. They are later picked up by the trucks.”
A pile of garbage about 100 metres from a government school in the area had everything from plastic waste, kitchen waste and garden waste, to a pair of jeans, clearly indicating that segregation of waste at source was not taking place.
Stating that the civic body had not taken up any awareness drives, Arun R., an autorickshaw driver who lives in the area said, “We also want to live in a clean environment. Earlier, when segregation of waste became compulsory, we used to separate dry and wet waste, but the pourakarmikas would mix it in one bin. So we decided to stop the wasteful exercise.”
Meanwhile, residents of Gandhinagar said that only the main roads in the wards were kept clean, while waste collection in the bylanes and narrow lanes was not taking place effectively.
Parimala P. (22), a homemaker and resident of the Gandhinagar ward, said heaps of garbage lie unattended to in their area. Pointing to garbage near her house, she said, “Nobody comes to clean our area and there are a lot of stray dogs. Recently, one of my neighbours suffered from dengue fever. The authorities concerned have promised us time and again that they will keep the city clean. But nothing has been done.”
When asked if she had heard about the zero garbage programme that was kicked off in her ward, she said, “Zero garbage? What is that?”
Officials from the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) said the delay in implementation of the project was because of the delay in procurement of materials that are needed for processing of dry and wet waste. However, they claimed that residents were fully prepared for the process.
Gopalkrishna, councillor of the Gandhinagar ward, said he had not received any information on how the process could be carried out.
Meanwhile, B.S. Prasad, chief engineer, solid waste management, who is heading the zero garbage project, said it would be implemented from August 1. He also said that the wards chosen already had dry waste collection centres, which would make the process easy.