GWAHATI, April 28 � The three-member Independent Public Committee, which went into the problem of treatment of city�s Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) is critical of the detailed project report (DPR) prepared by the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) for solid waste management under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewable Mission (JNNURM).
The Committee was formed by the Guwahati Development Department (GDD) of the State Government by an order on September 20, 2010 (No GDD 57/06/257). The Committee comprised former Dean of Cotton College Prof Dilip Barua, former Army officer and social activist Col P C Choudhury and former Executive Director of the HUDCO NE Regional Office P K Rajkhowa.
It was asked to evaluate the disposal and management of solid waste and the implementation of the solid waste project taken up by the Guwahati Municipal Corporation and Ramky Enviro Engineers jointly in private �public partnership mode.
The Committee has observed that the generation of 315 tonnes of solid waste adopted in the detailed project report (DPR) prepared by the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) under the JNNURM was an underestimation. It was �not even half of the total volume (of MSW) generated in Guwahati,� said the committee.
As such, the Committee said, the infrastructure created as per the DPR is inadequate to handle around 750 tonnes per day (TPD) of solid waste generated in the city. The total figure of 1,84,454 households as per the GMC record is inaccurate since the number of households including those living on encroached Government land (around 50,000) enjoying facilities provided by the civic authority are not yet brought under the GMC tax net, the report said.
The Committee is also critical of the decision to collect solid waste from one lakh households, out of over two lakhs, scattered in 60 municipal wards, and described it as a wrong one. For, it says, a large volume of waste generated by the remaining households continues to remain in street corners.
This has also created an opportunity for waste collecting agencies to claim remuneration by collecting waste from lesser number of households. The decision should have been to collect waste from one lakh household living within a well-defined boundary to avoid the above confusion, the Committee says.
GMC�s large workforce is underutilized after the solid waste management has been transferred to the Guwahati Waste Management Company Private Ltd (GWMCPL). The GMC is reportedly using it now in collection and transportation of waste, road sweeping and drain clearing on the basis of crisis management and stop gap measure, to mitigate the failure of the GWMCPL. Such use of workforce is anti-agreement and hence amounts to misuse, the Committee observes.
Moreover, indigenous technologies are available for segregation of inorganic components and inert matters through appropriate machines and for sanitary treatment of MSW to remove foul smell as well as to control flies or mosquitoes during pre-processing stage. There is thus scope for mechanical segregation to replace rag pickers� unhygienic method of segregation, the Committee says.