With the monsoon just a couple of months away, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) wants to make sure that the crores spent on cleaning the city’s nullahs don’t go down the drain. It is posting clean-up marshals and nuisance detectors along the nullahs to prevent people from throwing trash into them. The marshals will have the power to fine litterbugs.
The BMC plans to declare the nullah banks as ‘no-garbage zones’. Nullahs, full with garbage, often overflow during the monsoon, flooding nearby areas.
The BMC has set aside Rs 107 crore to clean up nullahs over the next two years; it had spent Rs 97 crore on the work in the last two years.
“As soon as we begin desilting the nullahs, we will use our Dattak Vasti (adopted locality) schemes by going door to door and telling people why they should not dump rubbish in nullahs,” said Rahul Shewale, Standing Committee chairman.
“We spend a lot of money and resources on cleaning drains. However, despite our efforts, there is still flooding in parts of the city, thanks to clogged drains,” said LS Vhatkar, chief engineer, storm water drains.
Additional Municipal Commissioner Aseem Gupta said littering made it difficult for the BMC to even estimate how much work was required on the drains. “Every monsoon, we get estimates for desilting work. However, we falter in getting them right because even though contractors desilt drains, people keep throwing garbage into them, nullifying our efforts,” said Gupta.
The BMC hasn’t yet decided whether it should revive the clean-up marshals drive, which it had scrapped. Shewale said the marshals would be back on patrol soon. “They will be on the streets by May 1 and help us with our programme,” he added.
The city has several laws that allow the BMC to impose fines for a range of violations.
May 2-8 is Zero-Garbage Week
Mumbai: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has declared May 2 to 8 as ‘Zero-Garbage Week’ as part of its pre-monsoon drive.
In a meeting on Friday, Municipal Commissioner Subodh Kumar asked the Solid Waste Management (SWM) Department to ensure that the city remains garbage-free. “The entire SWM machinery will concentrate on the drive,” Kumar said.
This drive will also help the BMC understand how much garbage the city generates. The last time the figure was calculated was five years ago. At that time, the city generated 6,500 tons a day.
The BMC has 280 of its own and 820 private vehicles to collect garbage. All these vehicles will be deployed, for additional hours if needed, during Zero-Garbage Week.
“We will measure the quantum of garbage collected during the week, which will give us a fair idea of how many vehicles and workers are required to keep the city clean,” said Additional Municipal Commissioner Mohan Adtani.
Nuisance detectors and clean-up marshals will be on duty to prevent people from spitting and commercial establishments from dumping garbage on the roads.
The BMC spends over Rs 250 crore a year on garbage collection and disposal. There are 5,800 garbage bins at 3,700 collection spots, and 1,100 vehicles to collect and transport trash to dumps. Over 27,000 conservancy workers and contractors collect the garbage and deposit it at the city’s three dumping grounds.