Shamshabad municipality on the capital outskirts has initiated a unique “Micro-Level Monitoring and Awareness Program” for the door-to-door collection and segregation of municipal solid waste by engaging self-help groups (SHGs), Nagara Deepikas, which has helped source segregation of waste from 15% to 75%, besides ensuring cent pent door-to-door collection.
Women members of these groups are trained in different aspects of solid waste management such as micro-level monitoring of door-to-door collection, sensitisation of households on source segregation, the importance of not littering on roads and in open places, and against garbage burning, said Director of Municipal Administration N. Satyanarayana on Friday.
‘Nagara Deepikas helped the municipal authorities improve waste collection as well as segregation into wet, dry and hazardous wastes by households, acting as a liaison between the municipality and the citizens, to reduce the gaps in the system within a couple of months of they being pressed into service.
Each Nagara Deepika covers around 500 households to counsel them about the waste and road littering while also keeping on eye on the drains overflow and burning of waste. This information is conveyed to the officials concerned on daily basis. Shamshabad municipality has a total of 25 wards and around 13,076 households. A pilot programme was started in 10 wards by appointing 12 Nagara Deepikas for them and this was gradually enhanced to 17 women after noticing the positive impact. Soon, it was taken throughout the town and a spin-off of waste segregation has been that auto-drivers have been earning up to ₹300 a day selling the dry waste.
ITC-WOW has been providing support to community awareness programmes on source segregation of waste, said said senior officials. The experiment was taken to the Badangpet municipal corporation with 32 wards and around 39,000 households. Here, 64 Nagara Deepikas were appointed and this helped eliminate 82 garbage points, and 100% door-to-door collection was achieved with 80% waste segregation. In fact, 1,600 households have begun home-composting and terrace gardening too, they claimed.
Nagaram municipality with 20 wards and 16,000 households followed suit by appointing Nagara Deepikas and training them on source segregation and home-composting. This has helped achieve cent per cent door-to-door collection and 75% source segregation.
Dry Resource Collection Centres (DRCCs) have been set up in these urban local bodies for selling the dry waste by autos, and ITC WOW is helping them to market various recyclables. If it was up to 300 kg dry waste being collected before, now in Shamshabad alone - it is about 2,000 kg., 5,000 kg in Badangpet and 1000 kg in Nagaram a day, the officials added.