Lack of Citizen Participation may cost Bengaluru its rank

Bangalore City

Lack of awareness among citizens regarding the Swacch Survekshan Survey is resulting in fewer votes being cast from the city and may cost the city to slip in the ranking.

The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) has organized the Swachh Survekshan Survey which will rank cities on a seven-star rating system. The annual survey will last until Jan. 31 2019. The whole intention of conducting this survey is to make cities in India garbage free. Each municipal body has to fulfill certain conditions to gain the star rating. Only one city will be adjudged as the “Cleanest city” in India.

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has declared Bengaluru a two-star city before the launch of the survey.  While many of the major cities across the country have given themselves ratings from three to five stars, BBMP decided to stick with two-star ratings. One of the major aspects of getting a good score for any city in the survey is ensuring a good number of votes from the citizens of the city.

BBMP was at the 210th rank in the 2017 Swachh Survekshan survey and ended up in 215th position in the same survey conducted in 2018. But this time, BBMP is moving heaven and earth to ensure they end up with a better rank in the next survey in 2019. BBMP had decided to undertake a massive social campaign to educate citizens and increase awareness among them regarding the Swachh Surekshan survey. The social media campaign failed to create the impact as expected by BBMP among citizens of the city.

“I am not aware of any survey and not at all happy with the way BBMP is functioning in my ward. Garbage is everywhere in the locality,” said Vinay H, a resident of Taverekere.

“Solid Waste Management division has launched new initiatives and plans to tackle the garbage problem in the city. SWM has come up with sustainable models to recycle garbage, innovative ideas such as Swachagraha Kalika Kendra in HSR, public participation programs, and suchimitras. We have eight waste processing plants, 16 bimethanation plants, 164 dry waste collection centers, and two plastic processing centers.” Said Dr. Sandhya Jayakumar, an official with BBMP

“We have organized Beedi Nataka in markets and commercial areas.  Cards have been distributed to offices and media houses to create awareness among the residents of the city regarding the survey” she added.

“BBMP has made considerable progress in the SWM in the city. They have partnered up with many NGOs to facilitate training for pourkarmikas which will aid them in better segregation of the garbage.  Garbage menace in the city can only be tackled if citizens and BBMP work together.

Segregating the garbage at the source helps in the proper recycling of the waste and puts less strain on the environment. Citizens should come forward and cast their opinions and votes during the Swachh Surveskshan Survey 2019.

BBMP and Citizen Groups need to discuss the challenges and devise solutions if they wish to see a greener and cleaner Bengaluru,” said Mythali, Head of Sales and Marketing at Sahas Zero Waste, Bangalore.

Any citizen who is interested in casting their vote can visit this link and answer a questionnaire which contains seven questions. The voter needs to input their mobile number in order to successfully cast their vote.