NOIDA: Floral waste from temples here is now getting recycled into organic colours, incense sticks and compost by NGOs working with destitute women and mentally-challenged people, according to officials.
Under the 'Zero Waste Project', the Noida Authority has tied up with some NGOs for recycling hundreds of kgs of used flowers every day in a bid to check their dumping in water bodies, they said.
The authority's Horticulture Department daily transports used flowers from nearly half a dozen temples, including the city's Isckon temple, to the NGOs engaged in the work, a senior official said.
Sai Mandir in Sector 61, Isckon temple in Sector 33, Kali Bari Madir in Sector 26, Durga Mata Mandir in Sector 26, Hanuman Mandir in Sector 20, Sanatam Dharm Mandir in Sector 19, Shani Mandir in Gheja Village are participating in this initiative, Noida Authority's Chairman-cum-Chief Executive Officer Alok Tandon said.
"In the days of yore, the flowers were immersed in the river since it was considered to be an ancient tradition. Maybe it was, but many decades ago, when the river flowed freely and the air was clean and fresh. Now, our rivers, ponds, water bodies are badly polluted and dumping of floral waste would only add to the water pollution," he said.
Tandon said the authority has partnered with NGO The Society for Child Development and Nari Niketan to recycle floral wastes to bring about transformation.
"The women in these NGOs have been trained in flower recycling -- transforming the flowers into colors for Holi, agarbatti (incense sticks), compost. A Zero Waste project! And all products are 100 per cent eco-friendly," he said.
"Products are getting ready and we the people of Noida will witness a miracle -- from polluting the river to brightening the lives of these women who have lost all hope.
Organic colours and agarbatti is being made by recycling temple flowers that are otherwise disposed in the river creating pollution of unimaginable proportions," Tandon added.
The CEO said the authority is open to working on similar projects and support such initiatives.