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Bucket purchase rocks Hassan CMC

Sathish G.T.
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Waste is being mixed before they are taken to the dumping yard.— Photo: Prakash Hassan
Waste is being mixed before they are taken to the dumping yard.— Photo: Prakash Hassan

The Hassan City Municipal Council (CMC) has landed in trouble by distributing buckets to the people for segregating waste.

Producing documents about the purchase of buckets through the Right to Information Act, Ramesh Babu, a CMC member, has sought an inquiry into the deal by the Lokayukta police.

Over Rs. 77 lakh was spent to buy 52, 200 buckets and residents in 26 wards were provided with two buckets each. While yellow buckets were for collecting non-biodegradable waste, green ones were for bio-degradable waste. The exercise was termed as an attempt to spread awareness about segregation of waste.

The CMC invited tenders to purchase buckets in October 2012. They were bought from a Bangalore-based agency in November 2012 at a cost of Rs. 147.70 each.

During a recently-held CMC meeting, Congress members alleged corruption in the deal and sought to know the details.

Mr. Babu said he visited shops in Hassan city to check the actual cost of these buckets. “The shopkeepers said the price of the buckets would be only around Rs. 40 to Rs. 50 each. I made enquires in Bangalore too. Nobody said they were worth Rs. 147.70,” he said.

Also, the CMC is yet to make arrangements for segregation of waste. The autorickshaws that collect waste do not have compartments for bio-degradable and non-bio-degradable waste.

“Though we segregate waste, we will have to dump them together,” said Prakash, a resident of Udayagiri layout.

When the issue came up for discussion at the CMC meeting, the officials told the members that the procurement was done by the Deputy Commissioner’s office.

However, V. Anbukkumar, Deputy Commissioner, feigned ignorance and said he came to know about it only through the media. “I took charge as DC only recently. I will look into the allegations and take action,” he added.

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