Beginning December 22, the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation will be collecting waste from sectors 1 to 30, instead of independent garbage collectors.
As many as 97 twin-bin vehicles of the civic body will collect waste from the sectors from Tuesday. Each vehicle will have one driver and two helpers. The system is being rolled out a few days before swacch survekshan takes place.
The civic body will penalise people who give out mixed waste. As a symbolic inauguration, UT Administrator VP Singh Badnore will flag off five vehicles from Punjab Raj Bhawan on Tuesday.
“The MC should ensure that the transition of the garbage collection process in smooth and seamless without any surprises,” said Vinod Vashisht, a resident of Sector 22.
Residents said that all informal waste collectors should also be suitably integrated into the system.
“To bring in more quality and ease of management, the corporation should give preference to door-to-door waste collection activity to all willing RWAs/Gated Communities who volunteer to collect waste from door-to-door and ensure its segregation at source and enable pickup by the MC vehicles from the designated mutually decided collection points. Under this arrangement, individual households should not be charged user fee (which varies from Rs 50 to Rs 350 depending upon the area of the dwelling unit), but that RWAs/Gated Communities should be treated as a ‘bulk waste generator’ and charged lump sum user fee of Rs 2,000 per month as entry under Schedule I of the bylaws,” added Vashisht.
It was suggested that residents of Dwelling Units staying in Marla Houses will be most affected by the garbage collection user charges once they are implemented as per the notified MC solid waste management by laws.
“We suggest monthly collection of these charges are through handheld online cash/card collection machines, so that issues such as
locked houses with owners not staying for over months or vehicles skipping regular garbage collections etc are also handled with such once a month human interaction with domestic waste generators,” he added.
People pointed out that the city has a considerable population of working couples or old persons, and that the civic body should ensure that no house, particularly upper floors, are not skipped as people might be away or in case of older citizens, who might not be able to personally handover their domestic waste.
Until now, independent garbage collectors were collecting mixed waste from houses.
LONG PENDING PROJECT
Segregated waste collection by the MC has been a long pending project, as garbage collectors would organise protests whenever the topic was broached, fearing loss of livelihood. However, this time, despite the strikes and protests, the Municipal Corporation aims to go ahead with taking over the waste collection.
To ensure independent collectors don’t lose their earnings, the MC is roping them in as drivers and helpers for the twin-bin vehicles.
A total of 392 vehicles will be purchased till December end, while as many as 430 vehicles will be carrying out waste collection. There are around 1284 independent collectors known to the civic body.
Officials said that they will be needing around 300 drivers, while two helpers will be required in each vehicle.
The MC wanted to begin this project on a pilot basis in 2012. However, it had to reverse its decision following protest by the garbage collectors. In 2018 when the MC Commissioner put forth the project of taking over garbage collection, the city witnessed a strike by garbage collectors. The issue was put on hold until talks happened between the collectors and the MC. It was said that a Memorandum of Understanding would be signed between both parties and no one would lose their jobs.
The garbage workers went on strike in October this year again, against their pending demands, one of which was about the project.
In residential areas, upto 50 square meter, Rs 50 will be charged, over 50 square meter to 200 square metre, Rs 100 will be charged from owners. Over 200 square meter to 500 square metre, Rs 200 will be charged. Rs 250 will be charged over 500 square metre to 1000 square meter, for over 1000 square meter, Rs 350 will be charged.
Commercial establishments, shops and eating places will be charged Rs 500.
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