Garbage collection system full of glitches

Contractors fail to carry out task on daily basis, city corporator has no check mechanism on ground

Published: 10th October 2019 06:41 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th October 2019 06:41 AM   |  A+A-

A BBMP worker collects garbage from homes in Bengaluru on Tuesday | Vinod Kumar T

Express News Service

BENGALURU: The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahnagara Palike (BBMP) head office at Hudson Circle makes tall claims that garbage is collected every day, and according to the new solid waste management policy too, wet waste will be collected every day and dry waste twice a week. But the reality is quite different.
In most places, garbage is not picked up, as is claimed. Instead, this task is outsourced to third party agencies who collect the garbage only when it is time for payment and inspection. In case of some large apartment complexes in the city outskirts, auto tippers are permanently parked at the corner of the complex and once a week, the vehicle is changed.

Regular garbage collection is seen only in core Bengaluru areas, where BBMP claims there is a proper system in place for timely collection. But in reality, it is a failure in most places because rules are not followed, said Susheela M, a resident of Hennur.

The waste that the city generates comprises 60% wet waste and 40% dry waste. The amount of waste generated is 4,200 tonnes every day, along with 1,500 tonnes of bulk waste. But only 2,500 tonnes go to landfills and 1,500 tonnes to processing plants.

The huge amount of waste generated leaves BBMP struggling. It has 4,500 auto tippers and 565 contractors are engaged to collect garbage but this does not happen.BBMP has drawn up 4,235 block maps. Each block comprises 750 houses with one auto tipper covering one block in the city, but sources revealed that the tippers are never in full strength and this is solely due to breakdown of a couple of auto tippers, and drivers abstaining from work. It is learnt that in each ward, only 60-70 per cent of the collection force is operational on a daily basis, and that’s one big reason for improper collection of wet and dry waste.

BBMP is running auto tippers and compactors on contract basis but has no clue if these vehicles are going on their daily rounds. This is because there is no mechanism to check, unless residents post complaints on the BBMP website, that garbage is not being picked for days together. 

Many localities in the city like Kammanahalli, Banaswadi, Yeshwanthpur, Rajarajeshwari Nagar, Whitefield, Ramamurthy Nagar, ITI Layout, RT Nagar, Sultanpalya, CV Raman Nagar and Bellandur still complain of garbage not being collected on a day to day basis, said a BBMP engineer.

BBMP Joint Commissioner (SWM) Randeep D admits there still isn’t 100% garbage collection from every house, and BBMP is lagging far behind. “It is definitely known that in many parts of the city, the collection of garbage is not 100% as auto tippers are not moving around. We have been tightening things and checking on the localities where garbage is not collected. We have asked auto tippers to make the rounds twice a day -- in the morning and at night -- but it hasn’t started yet.”

He added that during the morning shift, tippers should be on the rounds from 6.30am to 1.30pm, but they somehow finish with their duty by 10am and are not completing their full time which is another reason for the garbage not being picked up efficiently.

Not just in individual homes, BBMP has failed to pick up garbage from commercial establishments, hostels and guest houses, where they claim their timings don’t match with the tipper collection agents. Thus, establishments are left with no choice but to dump it on roads, leading to the creation of black spots, said Arun L, a resident and shop owner at Chickpet.

Another big problem in garbage collection is the common complaint from citizens that auto tippers and compactors give preferential treatment to big housing apartments and neglect many independent houses in their area. People living in independent houses point out that the collectors strike a deal with the apartment owners and maintenance staff and are given a handsome monthly sum for daily collection, while they get only petty remuneration from independent houses, said Nazia H, a resident of HRBR Layout.


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