Madurai

Burning waste in bins, is becoming a raging issue

Garbage bins set on fire at Masilamanipuram in Dindigul on Friday.

Garbage bins set on fire at Masilamanipuram in Dindigul on Friday.   | Photo Credit: G_KARTHIKEYAN

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We have been educating people about this through campaigns under Swachh Bharat

Overflowing garbage bins with thick smoke and fire rising from them have become a common sight in certain panchayats in Dindigul district.

Among them are areas like Balakrishnapuram and Masilamanipuram that are close to the city limits.

Tin bins provided for village panchayats under the Solid Waste Management scheme have only partly served the purpose though people dump waste in them instead of throwing the garbage all over, the collection of waste from the bins is not prompt.

Bins are only secondary waste-collection points as a door-to-door waste collection happens in every panchayat.

Every conservancy worker is given a target of 40 kilograms of garbage to be collected and once they collect that much, the waste in the bin is left to pile up.

As waste accumulates over days, the overflowing garbage is set on fire instead of being collected, in which the bins also get damaged.

Setting fire to garbage bins in the villages is indeed a problem, accepts an official from the Swachh Bharat Mission, implemented by District Rural Development Agency in panchayat areas. “Both conservancy workers and the villagers set fire to overflowing garbage. There’s a need for awareness among the public. They throw in food waste and sometimes even human waste and medical waste into the bins, forcing the workers to burn the garbage,” he said.

“Burning of waste including plastic is harmful to both the environment and the health of people, as plastics emit toxic gases. We have been educating people about this through campaigns under Swachh Bharat and the instances of burning garbage in the bins have come down,” he said.

He added that a new set of 1108 bins have been provided last month for 127 panchayats in the district under the scheme.

“Damaged bins are repainted periodically. We have appointed a Swacch Police for every 75 households in the panchayats to oversee the collection and segregation of waste. We have identified villages, where waste collection and processing is efficient and we have reduced the number of bins in those areas,” he said.

Kulathur panchayat in Vadamadurai union, N. Panjamapatti in Athoor union, Sirugudi and Sendurai in Natham union, are some of the villages that have been identified as well-performing panchayats.

“In Sendurai panchayat, the recyclable waste that was collected was sold for ₹62,000 by the SHG women who have been roped in for waste segregation. The vermi compost is also working efficient where biodegradable waste is converted into manure. We are working on improving supervision so that more villages reach this level of efficiency in waste management,” he added.

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Printable version | Dec 7, 2019 5:26:47 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/burning-waste-in-bins-is-becoming-a-raging-issue/article29985816.ece

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