One Step Closer To Becoming A Bin Free City
- Pallavi Priya
- Published on 19 Nov 2023, 9:00 am IST
- 3 minutes read
- In Udhampur, each government official participates in cleanliness drive on every first Saturday of the month
- Under DC Saloni Rai, the administration is focusing on streamlining the door-to-door collection of waste
- CCTVs are being installed and fines are issued to stop people littering around
Located in the Shivalik range of Himalayas and named after Raja Udham Singh, Udhampur is one the important districts in J&K connecting Jammu to Srinagar. And, like any other developing city, it is also facing the problem of waste management. The challenge is to instill civic sense in the public for keeping the city clean and instead of preaching, the administration has chosen the path to do and let others follow.
Under the leadership of District Collector Saloni Rai, every official of the district, from village level to district level, gather together on every first Saturday of the month to deep clean the city, and lead by action.
Speaking to Indian Masterminds, Ms. Rai said that the idea is to create awareness about waste management and move towards a clean and green city.
6000 OFFICIALS TOGETHER
Every first Saturday of the month, around 6000 officials are on the roads to clean their village and nearby areas. The Collector herself participates in the initiative. To make sure the exercise is taken seriously, a WhatsApp group has been created to corroborate with pictures and mark the attendance of the officials.
“Not every time we have 100% attendance but there is maximum participation. Slowly, the public is also coming forward to take part in the initiative,” said the Collector.
To dump the collected waste, the administration has tied up with the municipal corporation. Most of the garbage is taken in municipal trucks and dumped into landfill sites or dumping grounds.
Besides this, the administration is focusing on streamlining the door-to-door collection. Dustbins have been distributed and routes are marked. The Collector is confident that in a month or two, the district will be completely bin free.
“That is the idea. If waste is collected, then why would we need those big dustbins on the side of the road? Once we cover each house, the next step will be to focuss on segregation of the waste,” Ms. Rai said.
ENGAGING THE PUBLIC
The real challenge ahead is public awareness and their participation. Ms. Rai believes that there is a limit to awareness and there are situations where enforcement is required.
“Many people are coming forward to help but there are times when even I am cleaning someone shop’s front and the owner is just watching. Keeping the city clean is not just the administration’s job, it needs participation from the people,” she said.
The ban on single used plastic is already in place. Since Diwali, the administration is taking action against the offenders. Several raids and fines have been issued against those who have not yet taken the order seriously. CCTV cameras are also being installed in places which are vulnerable.
“Several times, I have spotted bulk of waste in on the areas where even I had cleaned. It is really painful to see it that way again. So, we will take strict action now. CCTVs will be installed and fine will be issued to stop people littering around,” Ms. Rai said in conclusion.
END OF THE ARTICLE