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Waste management goes private

By Our Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI, DEC. 6. A Mumbai-based private company has been entrusted with the task of managing the solid waste of the highly congested and commercialised areas of Karol Bagh and Sadar Paharganj zones of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi.

The AG Enviro Infra Projects, which made a presentation before senior MCD officials including the Municipal Commissioner, Rakesh Mehta, has been handling solid waste in Mumbai, Greater Noida, Ahmedabad and Ulhasnagar for the past several years. The company would be paid Rs. 682 for metric tonne of garbage collected, segregated and transported to the nearest landfill site by the MCD.

For the nine-year contract with the MCD, which is likely to take off by September next year, the company would be making an investment of Rs. 12 crores for putting in place the necessary infrastructure, manpower and equipment.

Serving a population of about ten lakhs in 14 Municipal Wards, the AG Enviro Infra vice-president, Josi Jacob, said they would be resorting to collection, segregation and transportation of garbage at night given the peculiar nature of the two highly commercialised and congested areas of the Capital. "We would be involving rag pickers in recycling," he said.

Besides introducing mechanised equipments like dumper placers, hi-tech compactors and transfer stations, the private player intends to renovate the existing 126 dhalaos in its area, he said. The entire operation is likely to generate additional employment for about 500 people.

Aware that the residents of the area would be faced with problems related to garbage, Mr. Jacob said they intend to have a complaint redressal centre, with people being given multiple options to register their complaints. This is the only part of the Capital, where the residents welfare associations are either non-existing or weak. As under the contract, the company is responsible for segregation of garbage, Mr. Jacob said they would be launching a mass awareness campaign for house-to-house segregation of garbage. "We would be targeting school children, RWAs, housewives and maids and servants," he said.

The Municipal Commissioner, Rakesh Mehta, said involvement of private players that too without any retrenchment of safai karamcharis would change the face of the Delhi in terms of cleanliness. So far the MCD has signed agreements with private players for six of its 12 zones. While, two rural zones -- Narela and Najafgarh -- would continue to remain with the MCD, Mr. Mehta said the remaining four zones, Rohini, Shahdara (South), Shahdara (North) and Civil Lines -- would soon be privatised.

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