Bins go missing from boats in Varanasi; clean Ganga mission affected
Some locals and boatmen were said to have had taken the bins home even as the municipal authorities assured a crackdown.lucknow Updated: Jul 16, 2017 21:00 IST
Several garbage bins have gone missing just a week after they were distributed to boatmen in the temple town of Varanasi to prevent tourists from throwing waste into the Ganga.
A boatman who did not wish to be named said some locals and boatmen had taken the bins home.
Vinod Kumar Nishad, president of the Maa Ganga Nishad Raj Seva Samiti, an organisation of boatmen, told HT that he would inform municipal authorities to ensure the dustbins are recovered.
The Varanasi Municipal Corporation (VMC) and NGO Brijkishore Student Welfare Association had distributed 1,200 dustbins — 600 blue and green each for dry and wet waste — to the boatmen on May 21 under the Namami Gange (clean Ganga) mission.
Over 40 drains carrying sewage from all over the city flows into the Ganga. A study by IIT BHU professor Mishra revealed that the pollution in the river increased as water levels receded due to high temperature.
Besides, many tourists have food while boating and dump the leftovers and wrappers into the holy river. Now they are supposed to use the dustbins on the boats.
Varanasi mayor Ramgopal Mohale said he would ask the municipal commissioner to look into the matter and “ensure that the dustbins are recovered”.
“Dustbins have been provided to the boatmen with the pious objective of making the Ganga clean,” Mohale said, and appealed to the boatmen to ensure their safety.
Vinod said the dustbins on his boat were safe as he locked them in a box before leaving for home at night. Some other boatmen too follow this practice.
Avinash Srivastava, VMC tehsildar, also said he would look into the matter and ensure that dustbins were back on the boats.
The VMC sanitation workers collect the bins twice daily and give them back to boatmen after taking out the garbage.
The civic authorities have decided to put up signage on the boats, asking people to use the dustbins and not dump waste in the river.