The Bengal government has constituted a steering committee to monitor the solid waste management across the state.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee instructed some senior bureaucrats and environment experts to form the committee, soon after Kolkata, along with 10 other cities from across the globe, was honoured with the best cities of 2016 award in recognition of its inspiring and innovative programme with regard to solid waste management.
“We have constituted the committee as per her instruction. She believes we should strongly monitor the solid waste management programmes across the state to keep the exemplary work going,” a state government officer told Millennium Post.
However, Kolkata is the only Indian city to receive the prestigious award. It received the award during the C40 Mayors’ Summit held in Mexico City. Kolkata’s Solid Waste Management Improvement Project has achieved 60-80 per cent (depending on site) segregation of waste at its source, with further waste segregation occurring at transfer stations.
This international summit of Mayors of millions plus cities of which Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai and New Delhi are the members from India, displayed the project aims to eradicate open dumping and burning of waste and to limit the concentration of methane gas generated in landfill sites.
The project also included 100 per cent door to door collection of solid waste, segregation and recycling by way of compositing which is sold in the market.
Meanwhile, the state government constituted the steering committee which will be headed by state urban development secretary Debashis Sen.
State environment secretary Arnab Roy, State Municipal Affairs Secretary Onkar Singh Meena, Panchayat & Rural Development secretary Saurabh Kumar Das, West Bengal Pollution Control Board Chairman Kalyan Rudra and some other experts.
“This is basically a technical committee. They will submit reports to the competent authority within three months,” said a senior bureaucrat, who is a member of the committee.
The committee will soon set up guidelines for Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) as well as Panchayat areas. According to the 1991 Census of India, there were 3,255 ULBs in the country; which are classified into the four major categories of Municipal Corporation, Municipality (municipal council, municipal board, and municipal committee), Town Area Committee (TAC) and Notified Area Committee (NAC).
“The ULBs and Panchayats have to strictly abide by the guidelines framed by committee. Any deviation of the guidelines will lead to a penalty,” the senior bureaucrat added.
The Bengal government however, is going whole mile to promote the state as a favoured tourist destination across the globe. The forthcoming Bengal Global Business Summit 2017 is all set to display various tourism aspects of the state promoting Bengal’s own brand ‘Biswa Banga’ and ‘Experience Bengal’. The brand Ambassador of the state, Shah Rukh Khan will feature in the promotional campaign of ‘Experience Bengal’.
“The global status from C40, will add another feather to the cap for the city. We’ll definitely try to promote this,” another committee member added.
The other cities that won the award are Addis Adaba, Copenhagen, Curitiba, Sydney and Melbourne, Paris, Portland, Seoul-Shenzhen, and Yokohama.