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Municipal Commissioner calls for list of e-wastes in govt offices

Kolkata: Municipal Commissioner Khalil Ahmed has requested all controlling officers to prepare a list of e-wastes (Electronic Waste) that are currently lying within their respective office premises.

According to a communiqué issued by the Commissioner, the list of e-wastes shall reach the controlling officer (Information Technology) by January 15, 2020.

"The empanelled agency certified by the West Bengal Pollution Control Board (WBPCB) shall visit, inspect and collect e-wastes from the premises and shall manage subsequent disposal process as per norms," said a senior official of KMC.

Ahmed has categorically mentioned 33 articles that come under the e-waste category, so that the controlling officers can prepare a comprehensive list.

The concerned Manager (Systems) and Deputy Manager (Systems) will be extending help for identifying e-wastes under the departments.

According to the official, a reasonable quantity of e-waste has accumulated in various offices of the civic body that also include its main building on S N Banerjee Road.

"We have asked all government departments and agencies to deal with e-waste as per the E-Waste Management Rules 2016 framed by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change," said Kalyan Rudra, chairman of WBPCB.

Experts opined that improper disposal of e-waste involves a constant risk of land and water pollution through contamination.

Dr. Sadhan Kumar Ghosh, founder coordinator of the Centre for Quality Management System at Jadavpur University, said that the state government, in collaboration with WBPCB, should come

out with a strong mechanism for implementation of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR).

EPR means responsibility of any producer of electrical or electronic equipment, for channelisation of e-waste to ensure environmentally sound management of such waste.

"Some small organisations are involved in collection of e-waste through mobile apps, but we are not sure whether they are disposing them as per the guidelines of E-Waste Management Rules 2016," Ghosh added.

It may be mentioned that India is among the top five e-waste generating countries in the world, according to a report published last year by the trade body ASSOCHAM and NEC Technologies India Private Limited. The others in the top five are China, Japan, Germany and USA.

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