BENGALURU: Though the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) commissioner had stated in October 2017 that illegal plastic seized will be used to build roads, BBMP has not effectively implemented the directive.
In October 2017, Commissioner N Manjunath Prasad had said that to dispose of the plastic which had been seized after plastic was banned in the city, the BBMP will use it to construct roads. Activists had been advocating the move for a long time, as it would kill two birds with one stone — dispose some quantity of plastic and ensure better roads, as roads with plastic mix are more resistant to damage by waterlogging.
Chief engineer in-charge of Major Roads, Somashekar S, said plastic is being used whenever any major road in the city is asphalted. He said since October, plastic had been used for about 500 km of the city’s roads.
However, according to Director of the firm that supplies plastic to BBMP for road construction, the BBMP’s plastic use since October has been very low. “Since October, BBMP has used only 100 tons of plastic, while I think it could have used up to 700 tons,” said K Rasool Khan, director, KK Plastic Waste Management Ltd. Khan says plastic was used to build JC Road, Lalbagh Road and Double Road.
An activist said though BBMP has received many suggestions in this regard from many activists, it have never implemented them. The activist had visited a BBMP official with a member of an NGO which had 6-7 tons of shredded plastic, but it was not utilised. The additional cost of using plastic is about `4,000 per km of a double-lane road.
In March 2017, member of the Supreme Court-appointed Committee for Solid Waste and national expert of Swachh Bharat Mission, Almitra Patel, had written to BBMP and KSPCB advocating the use of plastic.
Maharashtra has mandated plastic roads for 10% of all their asphalt roads of all sizes, while over 10,000 km of roads in Tamil Nadu have been laid using plastic. As per the guidelines, every city with a population of above 5 lakh has to build plastic roads up to 50 km.