Minister for Rural Development Panchayati Raj, Law and Justice, Abdul Haq Wednesday reviewed the preparations of waste Management in rural areas at a joint meeting of the Rural Sanitation, Rural Development Department and National Rural Livelihood Mission at Sher-e-Kashmir International Convention Centre.
The meeting was attended by Director Rural Development Kashmir Gazanfar Ali, Director Rural Development Jammu RK Bhat, Director Rural Sanitation Abdul Rehman Gasi, Mission Director SRLM Javid Bakshi, Additional Mission Director Ishfaq Ahmad and ACDs of various districts.
During the meeting minister stressed on the officers to expedite the process of identifying space for installation of a solid waste management plant at block level to reduce the burden at district level. Minister said the waste management has become a major challenge for the government and that a comprehensive mechanism will be out in place to deal with the situation.
Minister said the department has successfully adopted a decentralized process of disposing off the waste in Bisnah block of Jammu wherein the solid waste generated by households is separately composted and safely disposed and whole process is managed under MGNREGA funds.
Citing further example of the project, Minister said the project aims at keeping the environment clean and healthy along with generating job avenues for the local population. He said the project eliminates the age-old practice of dumping waste and instead it is used to generate income and save farmlands and the environment.
The Rural Development department has employed a dozen local workers to collect the waste for secondary segregation. After the collection, the non biodegradable objects like plastic, bottles, paper, tin, polyethene is packed and sold in the recycling market, thus earning money for the locals working for the project.
Abdul Haq said similar process will be adopted in other blocks to make rural areas clean. He said currently there is no proper mechanism in rural areas for waste management and the waste is dumped in open fields or streams thus polluting fresh water streams and choking them.
Abdul Haq said that the government will soon adopt a mechanism at Panchayat level for waste management. HE said government is aiming to change the attitude of people to segregate waste at its origin and to treat them accordingly.
He said government will assist and train people at village level min making organic manure out of the waste produced in homes that will help in waste management and will also encourage people to use organic manure made manures in their fields instead of manures full of chemicals which are harmful for human consumption.
Minister directed the officials to expedite the process of identification of land and other relevant prerequisite things so that the process of solid waste management will be started soon. Officials updated the minister about the process and assured the minister that the process will be completed in a time bound manner.