Shri Hardeep S Puri, Minister of State (I/C) for Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) has said that behavioural change and citizen/community participation is the key to sustained management of municipal solid waste. He was addressing Municipal Commissioners & State representatives from Ganga towns at a day-long workshop on Solid Waste Management here today. Shri Durga Shanker Mishra, Secretary, MoHUA, Shri U.P. Singh, Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) &Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Director General, NMCG also addressed the participants. The workshop saw the participation of Officers from 43 Ganga towns. Earlier, Shri V.K. Jindal, Joint Secretary and National Mission Director, Swachh Bharat Mission – Urban (SBM-U) welcomed the participants.
Shri Puri said that the Government has accorded the highest priority to rejuvenate the Ganga through its flagship program, Namami Gange. "In this regard, the Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs (MoHUA) is supporting the Ganga towns in achieving ODF status and effective solid and liquid waste management through the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM -Urban) and the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) respectively", he added. Pointing out that a total of 44 Ganga towns have been certified as ODF with all towns aiming to achieve ODF status by March 2019, Shri Puri said that MoHUA has also deployed the Quality Council of India (QCI) as the third party agency (TPA) for independent on-site assessment to evaluate the actual on-ground situation in these towns. The TPA findings presented at the workshop covered several aspects of solid waste management in Ganga towns. These include -
Putting up screens on nalas discharging into Ganga, to stop solid waste – status & condition.
River surface cleaning and waste disposal arrangements;
Cleanliness condition of river banks – whether there are garbage dumps (Old) and garbage heaps (littering);
Cleanliness condition of Ghats, sweeping, disposal and anti-littering measures;
Availability of solid waste processing & treatment plants – their designed capacity, actual working capacity.
Shri Puri said, "the TPA is a very effective way of monitoring the performance and delivery of the Ganga Town administration in solid waste management (SWM). However, given that the challenge of pollution of the Ganga is being addressed by three different Missions – SBM Urban, AMRUT and NMCG, all three Missions need to work together in convergence to achieve the shared objectives. I believe that the secret to the success of the Mission whether it is the Ganga Mission or the Swachh Bharat Mission encompassing the whole country lies in the synergy between the elected representative and the Commissioner of the city".
During the workshop, Shri Durga Shanker Mishra announced a special category of awards for Ganga towns under Swachh Survekshan 2019, the fourth edition of the annual cleanliness survey conducted by MoHUA which is presently ongoing (January 4 -31, 2019). A protocol for this special category of the award shall also be issued shortly by the Ministry, he said.
On the occasion, the Minister also launched a series of publications titled 'Smart Cities Mission: Journey So Far' which comprised a coffee table book, a compendium of Smart Cities Awards 2018 and a compilation of weekly newsletters.
The workshop saw state wise deliberations on the action plan on solid waste management in Ganga towns by representatives from five main Ganga States namely, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal.
(With Inputs from PIB)