SUBJECT :Swachh Bharat Abhiyan 

 Nearly four months have passed since VP Singh Badnore, Punjab Governor and UT Administrator, launched the project of segregation of waste at source with much fanfare, but the project has failed to take off.

Though the Municipal Corporation has distributed a set of blue and green bins for segregating dry and wet waste, respectively, it has not been able to start the scheme as it seems to have failed to win over residents as well as waste collectors. The corporation was to distribute a total of 4.70 lakh bins and officials claim that almost all of these have been distributed. Each set (two bins) cost the civic body Rs 94.50. Over Rs 2 crore has been spent on these bins, which are gathering dust.

Initially, Baldeo Purushartha, MC Commissioner, had declared that the scheme would be launched from Sector 48. However, the plan never took off from there. Later, the MC planned to start it from Ward No. 1 (from Sector 1 to 11) and also refurbished rehris of collectors. Last week, it again declared that the scheme will be started from Sector 48, but in vain.

Though officials claim segregation has started in Ward No. 1, on ground it hasn’t. “The segregation hasn’t started in our sector. Some residents even failed to get bins from the local dispensary from where they were supposed to collect these. I fail to understand what they are up to,” said Sohan Lal Bansal, general secretary, House Holders Welfare Association, Sector 8. “We haven’t been informed when the waste segregation will start. We had earlier got a schedule; later we were told it is incorrect,” said Col Kulwinder Singh (retd), general secretary, Residents Welfare Association, Sector 10.

Baljinder Singh Bittu, president of the Federation of Sectors Welfare Association Chandigarh, said, “Only paperwork is being done. There is no awareness among residents and no meeting has been held with us.”

No compost plant

While the MC is encouraging residents to have a compost plant to process their waste, ironically it has failed to build its own. Jaypee had sought three months to build one at its processing plant in Dadu Majra.

No takers for 10% rebate

The MC had approved 10 per cent tax rebate for those who compost waste in their house or society premises, but residents do not seem excited about the move. “The segregation project has failed as people are not using the bins. There should have been a 50 per cent rebate on in-house composting,” said senior Congress councillor Devinder Singh Babla.

Inquiry sought

Last month, former MP Harmohan Dhawan had met the MC Commissioner seeking an inquiry into the selection and purchase of dustbins. 

Waste segregation on: MC

MC officials claimed that the segregation of waste at source had been started from Ward No. 1 and they were holding meetings with residents’ welfare associations for spreading awareness.

People using bins for other purposes

With the scheme yet to be implemented even after three months, people have started using the bins for other household purposes such as keeping clothes to be washed or for planting saplings.

Source: The Tribune