India File

Clean it like Mysuru

Anil Urs | Updated on January 16, 2018

Getting smart Apart from the cleanliness, Mysuru’s urban landscape is also known for its public transport. Many of the buses run under the Intelligent Transport System that provides real time schedule of a bus   -  MA Sriram

India’s cleanest city now makes money out of its garbage

Mysuru, the cleanest city in India, has efficiently adopted 3 Rs’ – Refuse, Reduce, Recycle. Now it has added another R – Reuse.

This has helped the Karnataka city, which boasts of door-to-door garbage collection, to monetise the waste it generates.

“By creating garbage processing centres in the city, we have created a workable model where wet waste is made into compost.

The compost plant generates 200 tonnes a day. Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) gets ₹6 lakh as royalty from ILFS (who operates the biggest compost plant), while processing centres earn another ₹24,000 a month by selling dry waste,” said CG Betsurmath, former Commissioner of the MCC.

IL&FS Waste Management and Urban Services Limited is a fully-owned subsidiary of Infrastructure Leasing and Finance Services (IL&FS).

“At the processing centres, we have begun to encourage women self help groups (SHGs). Selling dry waste supplements their monthly wages,” he added.

At present, the city has nine zero waste management centres and 47 dry waste collections centres.

Mysuru has achieved 100 per cent door-to-door collections and 80 per cent of its garbage is segregated before being processed.

Mysuru functions like an ideal city. It has functional toilets,is poster-free and 98 per cent of its 1,586-km network of drains are covered. And Mysuru is also free of open defecation, and it is not just because of Swachh Bharat.

Its slum rehabilitation programme, under which 6,000 units were built, has been the key to tackling the open defecation problem. The MCC identified land and co-ordinated with Karnataka Slum Development Corporation to rehabilitate slums, opening up some of the congested parts of the city. “The units were constructed on multi-level and each unit had toilets. We also provided public toilets close to the housing units,” said Betsurmath.

The city scores over other cities in the country in its citizen participation.

“We are working out a model of zero waste at home. The solution is to reduce the garbage generated at home by segregation at source, and in recycling,” explained Betsurmath.

To make this cleanliness drive deeper, the city is working out a plan to drive or conduct mass education programme on the types of waste and better segregation of waste. The MCC has started mass education campaign on ‘life after ban of plastic.’

“So far we have achieved 18 per cent (on ban of plastics). Door-to-door collectors are being trained to educate the citizens on scientific disposal of plastic,” said Betsurmath.

Published on October 24, 2016

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