GUWAHATI, Jan 27 � Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) councillor for Ward No 12, Balendra Bharali has made a strong plea for terminating the contract signed by the Guwahati Development Department (GDD) with M/S Ramky Enviro Engineers Ltd for the city�s municipal solid waste (MSW) management in 2008.
In a letter to the GMC Mayor, Bharali, also a former Deputy Mayor of the city, said that the Hyderabad-based firm has failed to fulfill the promises it had made for integrated MSW management. The firm is callous in its approach, and it is doing its assigned work partly.
Guwahatians are not satisfied with the performance of the firm, which was engaged to make Guwahati a clean city. The firm is to ensure segregated collection of MSW from the waste generators, sweep the city streets and clean its drains.
The firm has not done source segregation of the MSW, and it is collecting un-segregated MSW from one lakh households. Since the household collection of MSW is inadequate, the city is littered by the rest of the Guwahatians by dumping their solid wastes on the roadside.
Though it is to carry out street sweeping, it is carrying out such operations in a few commercial areas of Maligaon Chariali, Fancy Bazar, Lakhtokia, Paltan Bazar and Ganeshguri during the night hours in a partial manner. It is not cleaning the drains.
The contract provides for separate storage of dry and wet waste, separation of the items that could be recycled from the dry waste, separate storage of predominantly organic waste and separate storage of drain silt and or inert waste (street sweeping). None of these clauses of the contract have been met by the firm, alleged Bharali.
Since there is no segregation of the waste that needs segregation, a filthy and unhygienic condition is there wherever the secondary MSW collection points (dustbins) are located.
M/S Ramky has not appointed any accredited agency to inspect the operations of its Pub-Boragaon plant on the pollution control measures installed at the plant and hence there is no report from any of such agencies on the matter. The contract had made it mandatory for the Ramky to engage one accredited agency for the purpose.
M/S Ramky has been directly collecting scavenging tax from restaurants, malls, marriage halls etc., without performing its job in the desired manner. It is thus making an extra income of around Rs 5, 00, 000 every month through such collections, alleged Bharali.
However, the firm is paid between Rs 58 lakh to Rs 60 lakh per month by the GMC. The charge for primary collection of MSW is based on the list of households prepared by the firm.
The procedure has provided opportunity for the firm to claim remuneration by not collecting contracted volume of waste, since the GMC has not identified the one lakh households covered by the firm under the scheme, Bharali said.
He also resented the fact that the GMC has tried to augment the Ramky operations by procuring waste handling equipment worth Rs 8 crore. Moreover, door-to-door collection of garbage is not the constitutional obligation of the urban local bodies under Article 243 W of the Constitution of India. It is the responsibility of the waste generators to deposit their waste at the secondary collection points (that is, dustbin etc), Bharali pointed out.