BANGALORE: Under fire from residents for asking apartment owners to manage their waste and also collecting garbage cess, the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has defended its waste management policy.
A senior BBMP official said the amount collected by the palike as garbage cess is not more than Rs 100 crore.
“Apart from collecting waste from households, the Solid Waste Management Department also has to keep the streets, parks and other public places clean,” he said. This requires more money, and the garbage cess is too less when compared to the work the BBMP takes up, he said.
The civic body is also not passing the entire responsibility on bulk generators. “For instance, we have provided five acres for the hoteliers’ association to set up a waste processing unit at Kanhalli and we acted as facilitators,” he said.
According to a public notice issued last year, bulk waste generators such as malls, marriage halls, and apartment complexes with 50 units and above have to dispose of the waste themselves. An amendment to the Karnataka Muncipal Corporation Act in August 2013 made it clear that violations by bulk generators would attract a fine of Rs 500 for the first time and Rs 1,000 subsequently.
However, the BBMP said it has not issued any fresh notification on the issue. Speaking to Express, Special Commissioner (Solid Waste Management) Darpan Jain said the notice was issued last year, and BBMP gave enough time for bulk generators to comply with the regulations.
‘Penalties Are Reasonable’
BBMP Commissioner M Lakshminaryana said they may impose a penalty of Rs 2,000 to Rs 10,000 on bulk generators for violating rules. “We do not slap unreasonable amounts on them. Ultimately, it is the duty of BBMP to dispose of waste and we are doing it directly or indirectly,” he said.
The commissioner said if any apartment association claims that it has got notices asking it to pay an unreasonable amount as penalty, it can bring it to his notice.
BBMP Solid Waste Management Expert Committee member N S Ramakanth said 50 per cent of the bulk generators in the city are complying with the norms, and are disposing of the waste they generate. But in a city like Bangalore, where there are a large number of apartment complexes, waste management by one agency will be difficult, he said.