Swachh Bharat: NDMC panel nod to convert closed "dhalaos" into public utilities

  • | Wednesday | 13th October, 2021

New Delhi, Oct 13 (PTI) The standing committee of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation on Wednesday approved a proposal to convert its closed and abandoned "dhalaos" (garbage dump yards) into public utilities in partnership with other agencies, officials said. The move aims to make the area cleaner, and the civic body also said that about 250 dhalaos have been closed since the start of Swachh Bharat mission a few years ago. The Standing Committee of the NDMC in its meeting gave nod to the proposal to use these sites which have either been closed or lying abandoned to improve the sanitation condition of the wards, and also utilise such spaces for public benefit. According to the proposal, "dhalaos" which are beside right of way (roadside), corner of parks, municipal buildings, shall be closed or demolished as they are creating unhygienic conditions, and the organic garage also attracts stray animals to such sites. The conversion of these sites into public utilities like toilets, libraries, senior citizens" centres on an "as is where is" basis with a second party, such as an NGO, RWA, a private firm or a PSU, shall be done through a memorandum of understanding. The second party shall do the construction and conversion required to make the site functional, and maintain and operate it, for a period of five years, and then hand it back to the NDMC, unless mutually agreed for the time period to be extended, as decided at that time, according to the proposal. The proposal will now await nod of the NDMC House. The standing committee is the highest decision-making body of the corporation. The NDMC shared data during the meeting, as per which 246 "dhalaos" across its six zones have been closed in the last few years after the launch of the Swachh Bharat Mission in October 2014. Also, about 100 more "dhalaos" are likely to be closed by the end of December, the NDMC said. According to the civic body, the zone-wise distribution of the 246 closed "dhalaos" are -- Civil Lines (36), Keshav Puram (71), Karol Bagh (10), City-Sadar Paharganj (9), Rohini (113), and Narela (7). At a press conference held at the Civic Centre on September 23, North Delhi Mayor Raja Iqbal Singh, South Delhi Mayor Mukesh Suryan and East Delhi Mayor Shyam Sunder Aggarwal had concurred that making Delhi "dhalo-free" in the next six months was the shared goal of the three civic bodies. The announcement had come ahead of the civic elections in Delhi due in 2022. Dhalaos or garbage dump yards are traditionally designated places from where sanitation workers collect garbage deposited by people. However, efforts have been made by three civic bodies to reduce the number of such yards, and instead carry out door-to-door garbage collection and other means to make the city look cleaner. Meanwhile, starting November 1, the NDMC would only collect segregated waste from households and shopping establishments, among other places, and "red stickers" would be put up on the premises of regular defaulters, officials said on Wednesday. Municipal Commissioner Sanjay Goel has issued the directions after holding a review meeting with officials and concessionaires on the progress of compliance of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016, they said. PTI KND CK

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