Friday, November 24, 2000

KMC launches Household Waste Collection Programme

By Razen Manandhar

KATHMANDU, Nov 23 - Kathmandu Metropolitan city (KMC) decided today to charge fee for its service of collecting garbage from approximately 130,000 houses and other commercial firms, in a bid to gather local participation in solving garbage disposal problem.

In a public notice issued Thursday, KMC Executive Officer Hari Prasad Rimal stated that those who overlook the decision would be subjected to pay a fine of up to Rs 15,000.

He said that this decision to operate the Household Waste Collection Programme was only an attempt to seek people’s cooperation in managing the pile of garbage in the metropolis. "Charging for the garbage would at least compel city-dwellers to reduce the amount of garbage and would also encourage them to reuse the waste as much as possible," he added.

"It will take time for the people to adjust to the habit but we will not let anybody litter the streets as before. Collecting the local’s names will continue for one or two weeks. The locals will pay after one month’s service," said Shanta Ram Pokharel, the chief of KMC’s Environment Department.

In the first phase, seven roads in the capital have been chosen for the project. The residents of Teku-Kalanki Road, Kalimati-Balku Road, Tripureshoar-Minbhawan-Tilganga Road, Maitighar-Putali Sadak-Kings Way, Singh Darbar-Kings Way, Sinamangal-Bag Bazar Road and Tripureshwor-Thapathali Road will not be allowed to throw garbage in the streets from Thursday onwards.

In these areas, containers will move around about between 6.30 to 9.00 a.m. and the locals must deposit their daily bulk of garbage in the vehicles. For this, they will have to pay from Rs 75 to Rs 20,000 monthly according to the nature of the institutes.

"An average family which produces around 10 litres of garbage daily will pay Rs 75 monthly. Whereas a five-star hotel producing 1500 litres of garbage daily should not dissaprove of paying Rs 20,000 monthly for managing its huge bulk of garbage," said Pokhrel.

However, KMC will not take responsibility for collecting hazardous, chemical, infectious and expired pharmaceutical wastes from hospitals etc unless the wastes is separated categorically.

Pokhrel said, "Although KMC was doing its best to manage the garbage, it apparently has failed in the past because the locals litter the streets when we finish collecting it."

He added,"Some so-called NGOs also create additional problems by collecting garbage from the courtyards and dumping it in the main streets. They collect money for littering the city."

Now such NGOs will have to obtain KMC’s permission to continue wih this practice.

A team of city policemen will accompany the KMC staff while visiting the locals door to door for "subscription" fees.

Deputy superintendent of city police Bishnu Singh Basnet said the a team have been appointed for enforcement of this new project. "We will fine the locals immediately if they are found dumping garbage at wrong time. Our jawans in point-duty and mobiles will inform us of such misconduct."

KMC spends around Rs 170 million annually to manage 350 tonnes of garbage Kathmandu produces daily.
[Kathmandu Friday November 24, 2000 Mangshir 09, 2057.]