Union Urban Development minister M Venkaiah Naidu has directed officials to convene a meeting of newly-elected mayors of all three municipal corporations for a “detailed discussion on issues concerning sanitation in the capital, including solid waste management.” Emphasising the need to improve sanitation in Delhi, Naidu said he would like to have detailed discussions with the mayors to come up with a roadmap. The directions come after a meeting between the minister and North Delhi mayor Preeti Agarwal in Nirman Bhawan on Wednesday.
Agarwal spoke about the financial difficulties faced by the municipal body in addressing various problems, including sanitation, in areas under its jurisdiction. She elaborated on efforts initiated to improve the revenues of the corporation, such as development of municipal land and properties, ward-level surveys of properties, issuing unique ID numbers and a cluster-wise advertisement policy.
The mayor also apprised the minister about lack of adequate land for garbage disposal, and said the MCD would like to focus more on solid waste management through waste-to-energy plants and waste recycling to minimise the quantum of garbage disposal. “The overflowing Bhalswa landfill needs immediate attention,” she said.
Agarwal told The Indian Express that she met Naidu after her “unsuccessful” meeting with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. “Our meeting with the CM last week was unsuccessful and he gave us no assurance to help us improve our situation. We have met Venkaiah ji and informed him of our vision. We want to improve the sanitation, education and health departments…”
The three Delhi mayors, along with commissioners of the three corporations, are expected to meet the UD minister next week.