HYDERABAD: Believe it or not. As many as 140 to 145 new Swachh Auto Tippers, meant for door-to-door collection of garbage in Greater Hyderabad, have been untraceable for more than four months.
It is learnt that these auto tippers, each costing Rs 4.80 lakh, are being operated for commercial purpose in the districts of Mahbubnagar, Medak, Nalgonda, Rangareddy, Karimnagar and Warangal.
These auto tippers are being used for carrying passengers, transporting sand and other construction material, shifting household articles and tent house articles, etc in the districts.
GHMC commissioner B Janardhan Reddy has taken a serious view of the scam and directed deputy municipal commissioners of all GHMC circles to trace the missing auto tippers immediately with the help of traffic police and RTA officials. He also directed them to lodge a complaint with the police about the missing vehicles and take steps for registration of cases against the tipper operators.
To make Hyderabad a clean and garbage-free city, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao had announced the introduction of 2,500 Swachh Auto Tippers by replacing the tricycles under Driver-Cum-Owner Scheme for Swachh Hyderabad.
Of the 2,500 auto-tippers, the GHMC procured about 2,000 and distributed some 1,800 to selected beneficiaries who had driving licence and experience. The subsidy for SC/ST under the scheme was 35 pc and BCs and minorities it was up to Rs 1 lakh. In the case of other beneficiaries, 10 to 20 pc contribution was required from them. The loan repayment tenure is six years.
The beneficiaries, to whom the auto tippers were allotted, were allocated 600 to 800 houses within a radius of 3 to 4 km for garbage collection. They were given training in driving, collection of garbage, handling households, management and maintenance of vehicle, repairs and provision for identity cards.
Each operator, along with a helper, has to collect garbage from every house from 6 am to noon everyday and dump the garbage at the designated transfer station which is at a maximum distance of 6 km from the collection area. The operator collects a monthly fee ranging from Rs 50 to Rs 100 from each house.
At the GHMC general body meeting held last month, the misuse of auto-tippers by owners was raised by TRS and MIM corporators. They said the tippers were found running in Yadagirigutta, Shadnagar, Siddipet, Amangal, Kalwakurthy, Atchampet and other places. GHMC officials failed to take any action against the erring operators.
Some owners, who are running their auto-tippers on commercial lines outside the city, alleged that the GHMC had failed for five months to assign them the areas of garbage collection due to opposition from tricycle owners who have been collecting garbage till now.