Waste management and cleanliness are major challenges, says new Kalyan-Dombivli civic chiefmumbai Updated: Mar 23, 2018 01:01 IST
KDMC civic chief Govind Bodke in his office.(Rishikesh Chourdhary/HT Photo)
When the new Kalyan Dombivli Municipal Corporation (KDMC) commissioner Govind Bodke, 51, took charge three days ago, Adharwadi dumping ground fire had been doused but not the residents’ anger. As residents protested outside the KDMC headquarters, Bodke knew what the challenges were: solid waste management and cleanliness.
A 2010-batch IAS officer, Bodke had earlier worked as additional divisional commissioner in Aurangabad, deputy commissioner of the revenue department (Konkan Bhavan) for five years and pranth officer in Bhiwandi from 1996 and 2000.
Bodke, who succeeded P Velarasu, worked as commissioner in the fisheries department, Maharashtra, for a year and carried out projects benefiting more than 1,500 fishermen across the state.
In a free-wheeling chat, he promised to improve KDMC’s finances, undertake pre-monsoon work immediately and reduce delays on road works. Here are excerpts:
What are the major challenges in Kalyan and Dombivli?
As far as I have studied the city, I think the most challenging are the solid waste management and cleanliness. The solid waste management in the city needs to be improved without any delay. I have been working on it from Day 1.
What plans do you have to tackle the two challenges?
Decentralisation of solid waste management is one of the major steps. There is a need to have dumping grounds and waste treatment facilities in every part of the city. Currently, the entire solid waste management is dependent on Adharwadi dumping ground, which is wrong. I will work towards categorising waste management into ward level.
How will you ensure cleanliness?
To ensure cleanliness, I have to visit the entire city and learn why waste is being dumped on the road. I will undertake the visit by the end of this month and then direct officials to carry out cleanliness work.
What steps will you take to prevent fires and minimise odour at Adharwadi dump yard?
I plan to lay a pipeline network across the dump yard so that it continuously sprinkles water and controls the heat. Once the plan is submitted to me, I will ensure it is implemented immediately. We will spray chemicals on the piled-up waste to minimise the odour and deploy more security guards to thwart miscreants from setting garbage ablaze.
Illegal construction is another big problem in the twin city. How do you plan to check this?
First, I will check the number of illegal structures and how many of them have been razed. I will direct officials to act against such structures as per court orders.
Hawkers’ unions often complain against the civic chief for not finalising hawking zones. How will you deal with this?
Some hawkers’ representatives have met me and I have promised to do the needful. I will convene another meeting with the union and discuss the status of the hawking policy. My aim is to implement the hawker policy without delay.
Do you have any plan to start the tender process for pre-monsoon work, or delay it like your predecessors?
I agree pre-monsoon works should be initiated by March so that we are prepared for rains. I will check with officials to know the status of the works. If the tender process has not started, I will expedite it.
Across the city, roads have been dug up for widening and concretisation works. How are you going to speed up work?
I am yet to visit the entire city. In some of the wards, roads are good after being widened and concretised. As road work comes under the basic civic amenities, my priority will be to make roads better.
Your predecessor did not propose any projects in the 2018-19 budget owing to falling revenues. How will you improve KDMC’s financial status?
I need to first study the budget. I cannot comment on this. But, I can promise to improve the civic body’s revenue.
How will you support the loss-making transport body?
I believe the civic transportation is one of the best modes of transportation and it should be promoted. Some of the KDMT members have met me and I have promised to work for the civic transport body’s development in the coming days.