BENGALURU: “When elected representatives can go door-to-door seeking votes ahead of elections, why can’t they do the same to spread awareness on waste segregation? Clearly, there is a lack of political will here,” said N S Ramakanth, a member of the BBMP expert committee on solid waste management, on Thursday.
Bengaluru’s garbage crisis has reached a threshold, and the city has the lack of political will to thank for it. Citing Kolar as an example, Ramakanth said the district administration there had taken a conscious decision to ban plastic, enforce segregation and decentralise waste dispose; and the authorities decided all this in a week’s time, unlike Bengaluru where officials seem to need a nudge to get to work.
“After villagers opposed the dumping of waste from the city in Mandur and Mavallipura, politicians and BBMP authorities woke up. They needed a High Court direction to enforce scientific methods of waste disposal,” he said.
Furthermore, Ramakanth said even after the High Court insisted that a dedicated solid waste management cell be set up, the BBMP has not done so. “Solid waste management is not a part-time job. Right now, the cell has some senior officials...but there is a shortage of at least 70 health inspectors and 70 environment engineers on the ground. Garbage disposal at the ward level is being managed by civil engineers, who are not experts in waste management,” he said.