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BBMP needs some lessons on Waste Management

It has been reported in Yesterday's(9-Jun) Deccan Herald that BBMP's contractors are dumping sold waste, including harmful Bio waste in the serene surroundings of Bannerghatta National Park. The report even says that the contractors are paying some persons Rs 200 per day to buy their silence.
It is dismal, to say the least, as to how much irreversible damage can be caused to the fragile eco-system around BG National park.

It is high time the waste management strategies of the BBMP change and we can help too.

I am trying to compile a list of some waste management strategies,

1. More localization of waste management by Waste seggregation at household level and sorting at ward level - Right now Waste is collected door-to-door and dumped into garbage trucks locally, which contributes immensely to under-utilization of good waste and contributes to hazardous land-fill sites.
Instead if,

a. It is made mandatory for residents to segreggate garbage and collection refused if not sorted.
b. Garbage thus collected is classfied as Kitchen waste, Plastic(non-degradable), Hazardous(Batteries), Recyclable(Glass, Metal) by collection agents at the particular site locally
c. The sorted waste is then handed over to local Recyclers, KK Plastic Waste Management(Khan Bros, who use plastic for water-proofing roads) etc.
d. Waste that cannot be recycled can then be dumped in land-fill sites by garbage contractors.

2. Rope-in trash collectors and employ them as BBMP trash collection agents, providing much needed employment and make them responsible for collection of garbage.

3. Put an end to the Garbage contractor lobby, who make a mockery of the environment and loot money from the govt. using largely falsified records. Instead, BBMP should aid their transition into full scale recylers who have incentives in recyling and managing the chain. Waste that cannot be recycled should be handed to these agents for usage as land-fill after compaction

4. Educate people on the growing hazards of indiscriminate waste dumping and on the incentives of waste seggregation and proper waste management. Local participation is absolutely necessary for the success of this system

5. Invite multi-national firms that help in capturing carbon and in return provide revenue to BBMP by selling those carbon credits on the Internation markets - Tons of Co2 is emitted by burning waste in the outskirts of Bangalore, which makes life unbearable for people living in Slums around the fringes.

6. Impose green tax on items/equipment that cannot be easily disposed-off such as Batteries, Refrigerants etc, to provide revenue for these operations.

silkboard's picture

Garbage contractor lobby?

Nice post sir, and very good points. Its not a subject like traffic or airport, so dont expect lots of reads or comments :)

Wanted to ask you for some insights on this "Garbage contractor lobby" - whats the modus operandi? How do the falsify records - what records are they mandated to keep in the first place?

silkboard's picture

An incident - dumping chemicals?

This reminds me of something I experienced about an year ago. I was noticing that two trucks (the water carrying type) used to just come and park near Varthur lake on the way to Varthur Kodi. It was odd that they would just stand at those few spots for almost the full day and then re-appear next morning. And, what stood out was that they used to leak what looked like water.

After 4-5 days of observing, it hit me that these trucks could be just standing and disposing off some liquids they are not supposed to. So I went to them and asked politely as to why they park there, and told them it blocks the traffic. I am not sure if they thought I was more than curious or what, they weren't to be seen from the next day.

Bengloorappa's picture

Light at the end of the tunnel

In today's DH there is some good news and Hope for eco-friendly management of garbage that Bangaloreans churn out.

TerraFirma an NGO is setting up a 1,000 tonne per day waste processing unit. It is setting up technology to process waste. It is yet unknown whether that will end up being a purely landfill based unit or a sensible unit that recycles waste as well. Going by the name, it may do it. It will be one of the best things to happen in the waste management scenario of Bangalore.

The BBMP is also inviting tenders from "Individuals and NGO's" (notice the deliberate absence of "Companies", perhaps to avoid contractor lobbies) to operate on a BOT basis a waste disposal mechanism with their own technology and resources, but with about 25acres of land on the outskirts of Bangalore.

This is good on two counts,
1. Private players are given freedom to convert waste into compost, vermi-compost, bio-gas and energy and sell the end products
2. Private players bring in their own technology, business model and are paid only lifting charges for waste; There is a lot of money to be made by private players here and there will be competition for sure.

I hope the evaluation process is a rigorous and meritorious one.

May not be the panacea because,
1. Where there is money, there are always vested interests. The KSPCB has to ensure that it keeps a vigilant watch on the players closely
2. It is not binding on the parties to recycle waste. They could just compact waste and use it as a landfill in their allocated land, however there are many incentives against doing so as metals, compost, plastic recycled can sell for a good price.

I hope the private players also cash-in on ability to generate carbon credits by recycling waste and by preventing the current method of incinerating waste on the outskirts. Bio gas generation is also a good opportunity.

Perhaps, these private players can also hire the current garbage contractor agents for ferrying garbage from the city, so that they dont end up being a spanner in their wheel.


Bengloorappa's picture

BBMP to have garbage segregation points

This is one of todays' news item in Indian Express,

Looks like a leaf out of our book - BBMP wants to go local with Garbage Management, they are surely learning from their past mistakes.
It will be great to see more than 50% of the garbage generated being used for such purposes.
But, I am a bit unhappy that it is coming so late in the day and goes on to prove that unless their feet is held to fire, nothing moves within BBMP. As they say "Better late than never".

I hope to be able to raise this point in the BBMP thru' a Praja representative.

trimurthi's picture

Revive this post

I have few ideas on solving this problem for good. I would also be interested in trying out my solution in a locality first.

It seems that:
1. One should win a contract
2. (En)Force waste segregation
3. Process different categories of waste
4. Prove that waste management can be more efficient.

Winning a contract in BBMP looks like a tough job for a ordinary citizen. I'm lloking for some ideas from 'bengloorappa' based on his experience of talking to BBMP.
ssheragu's picture

BBMP - Waste Management

 I fully endorse the views of Bengloorappa to see the importance of waste disposal one should take a ride in the early morning (st 5-30 a m ) in BTS bus from CV Raman Nagar via Indira Nagar to Shivaji Nagar or Majestic it is an appalling sight to see all sorts of waste (food, mechanical, plastic bags etc.) lying on roads in front of shops thrown out by shop keepers while closing their shops the previous night, so that it will be picked up the next day in the morning at 10 or 11. until then these garbage will be stinking and polluting the atmosphere all such shop keepers should be penalised; their licence should be cancelled if any garbage is lying in front of their shops

I have a few points to add

  • 1 we should ensure that waste disposal is done in a professional manner by professionals
  • 2 garbage collectors should be called as health inspectors
  • 3 they should be given full protective gear
  • 4 they should be given a decent salary and should be insisted to have a basic education
  • 5 they should be provided mechanised transport
  • 6 they should go to from house to house and collect garbage on a daily basis
  • 7 no garbage bins should be provided on streets
  • 8 municipaliy should fine households if any garbage is lying in front of their house
  • 9 as Benloorappa pointed out there should be segregation on types of garbage by housholds so that their disposal is easy
  • 10 if each household is charged Rs 100 per month a lot of funds cann be generated for maintaining this system
  • 11 in fact in these days of recession some IT companies can take this as a scheme for implementation


Srinath Heragu

trimurthi's picture

So how do we start this?

Unless BBMP commissioner is reading this and looking to implement this in right earnest, this great post has the potential to go waste.

Anyone interested in doing something about this? I have a plan and I'm in process of executing it step-by-step. Anyone willing to get their hands dirty? (remember - 'kai kesaradare bai mosaru')
AMW's picture

BBMP needs some lessons on Waste Management

Great discussion!
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silkboard's picture

Please do post your plan

Trimurthi sir, please post your plan, or at least clear objecives and timeline, and we will market it to Praja members for their support.

AMW's picture

Who are the private waste contractors?

Shouldn't we track down these waste contractors and make a database of: 1. who they are? 2. what areas they cover? 3. what are their concerns? 4. how can the situation be improved for them & their staff? 5. how can the citizens support the waste contractors? 6. they could be invited to a discussion event where they are given complete freedom to air their concerns! In my opinion they probably do not have knowledge or resources needed to be more effective in what they are doing! Instead of complaining let us try and find out their story!
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kbsyed61's picture

AMW, Take the initiative!


 Very good suggestion. I suggest you should take the initiative on this very important issue. Hopefully more Praja members would join you. This is the way to go.

 To begin with could you pls:

  1. Enlighten Praja community with how the BBMP is handling the waste disposal?
  2. Details of Waste Dumps and how they are managed?
  3. Details of working of various contractors, Amount of contract involved etc?
  4. Then a proposal to fix the various kinks and major rehauls?

 Count me in for any off-site help.



Bengloorappa's picture

BBMP is planning to the right way ...

If this newspaper article is to be believed , looks like BBMP is indeed planning to do everything discussed in this post.
AMW's picture

Re: AMW, take the initiative!

Syed, I am doing whatever I can - unfortunately I do not live in the area right now. I am trying to gather information so that I can share information, knowledge, educate and support the development of waste management. Is there anyone who can take this action? Anyone who can visit BBMP and collect this kind of information (Name, Address, Telephone etc) and share it with Praja?
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Naveen's picture

What happened to Incineration ?

Some years back, there was a proposal to import incinerators to assist & reduce the no. of landfill sites. Does any one have information on this ?

s_yajaman's picture

Garbage separation project in our apartments

My wife has initiated garbage separation in our apartment building as a project.  This has been happening for about 4-5 months now with reasonable success.

We have about 225 apts in our apartment building of which about 180-200 are occupied.  The idea was to separate recyclable waste  from bio waste.  The recyclable stuff is sold.  the biowaste is collected by the van.  Still not sure where he dumps (sometimes too scared to even imagine).   For e-waste, there are boxes in the basement to dump stuff in (CDs, computer parts, etc).

it took a fair bit of effort.  My wife bought drums for the recyclable stuff and put one up in each floor near the waste chutes.  A note was circulated to all apartments via volunteers in each floor to educate people about the effort.  A competition was held among children to paint the drums, etc.

I think based on this the other apartments in the complex have also kicked off similar projects.  Not sure though


Drive safe.  It is not just the car maker which can recall its product.

Naveen's picture

Great Stuff !

Great going by Mrs.Srivathsa.

In Berlin & other German cities, there are four different containers for waste collection at railway stations, airports, etc, specifically for recycling wastes. What I really appreciated was that seperate charges were made for plastic bags at grocery & other stores, which automatically controls consumption of such items, so people tend to use their own reusable bags.

Denmark also has very good waste handling processes, as do all North European /Scandinavian countries. I think the next "revolution" & competition will be on how best nations reuse their wastes as resources become more & more scarce.

India is already a leader in reusing materials, albeit due to poverty, but this is an advantage that we must use to our advantage. May such initiatives spread & create more awareness !

AMW's picture

Re: BBMP Waste Management

Dear Srinath,

Your points are very valid. I think to add to what you have said:

1) commercial establishments like shops, resturants, hotels etc need to have an effective mechnised waste collection system put in place then almost 80% of the problem is solved.

2) commercial entities will have to be subjected to annual waste audits by BBMP where they prove what they did with the waste generated by them.

3) BBMP shall act as inspectors & hold violaters accountable.

4) Waste Contractors to be given permits renewable annually and their activities monitored thru reports. Landfills shall be accessable to only these contractors unless specially granted by BBMP. New technology & Practices have to be promoted.

5) The staff working for such contractors shall be evaluated on procedures, training & health.

6) Door to door collection is great but it is extremely labour intensive. The staff doing such work are hardly paid enough to lead a decent lifestyle. We as Indians need to decide whether we should opt for a labour intensive solution or a mechanised solution?

Please, check who gives great insights into what are the present practices in waste management in India!


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kbsyed61's picture

What is the process cycle?

 It would be very useful if somebody can shed some light on how does BBMP handles the waste that is produced in B'lore. Basically the process cycle that waste go through starting from House, collector, transfer to landfills etc. Would be interesting to know if there is any mechanism to separate the recycle items from the waste collected from households/commercial premises? The only recycle processes I know is one the rag pickers come and pick all the papers that is thrown out on street and second one is residences themselves selling it off to shops/hawkers (GUJRI) who buy paper, copper, iron etc.

 I am sure there has been few changes in this? But does these changes have brought any visible and quantifiable benefits to the city and its residences? Every now & then I do hear news about bio-waste from Hospitals not being handled right.


AMW's picture

Re: Garbage separation project in our apartments

Dear Mrs. Srivathsa,

First of all thank you for taking such efforts. But do not limit your effort to the internal collection only! Please, see where it goes from there follow the cycle for both wet & dry waste. I have seen a similar initiative in Koramangala, but to my horror after that the waste is emptied into the same truck therefore mixed and all this effort wasted.  At this moment I wanted to share an amazing website from the US about the story of how we all work in todays world

It would be great to identify specilised collectors like e-waste company like  and plastic waste company like who will sign a legal contract with your society renewable annually. They should be encouraged to give you a rebate or atleast submit a monthly invoice explaining the costs. Your society when dealing with these kind of contractors may need to incur the costs of such collection. Remember it is for the greater good! 

The recycled materials do not always give you or the contractor enough money to cover costs. The recession has had it's effect on fuel prices which inturn effects the price of recycled plastics. Only if the venture is profitable then will the specialised collectors expand their network to invest into education drives etc. Most times the contractors will not provide services because it costs more for them in terms of logistics. An attitude of partnership between your society & the contractor needs to be encouraged. I would recommend a Special Purpose Contract be created between the society & contractor with total transparency. On the society's end there has to be an effective measuring system as to what quantities are being gathered from the society on each visit by the contractor. Quaterly site inspection & audits need to be conducted at the contractors end - they should not be employing children, they should provide safe working conditions, they should pay above minimum wages to their employees, they should share the current market price for plastics etc. The result of the audit will ensure he continues work with the society for the next quarter. If the venture is creating a loss for the contractor then the society should compensate to ensure the good work continues.



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bikram satpathi's picture

Mrs .

Mrs . Srivathsa,

                           Good work. Who collects your E-Waste? We have  a colony of 540 units & our E-Waste has ben collected by E-Waste Recycler ( auth by KS Poll Con B) for over 2 yrs. One item missed out by every one is Tube lights. TL has tiny amounts of Mercury which is a Neuro toxin. Tiny amounts become a flood over time that too in your habitat area. Must have seen dead tube lights lying all over the road side. BBMP does not handle E-Waste separately. We residents have to look after our selves. 

The arrangement is to place  spl E-Waste drum   in your premises and content collected periodicaly. All this for Rs 500 one time cost. E-Waste Recyclers do not go for residents in a big way. But we have managed to reach out to colonies / apartments for this job.

We are two residents of Kalyannagar and have manged to spread the message ..

Spread this message. (tube lights  / CFLs are deadly left on the roadside) JOIN E-WASTE DRIVE...Want to learn what exactly is wrong with unattended e-Waste ...


srinidhi's picture

Blr plastic roads..

 some commendable  job done in plastic waste management and reuse..

Blr has many roads with this blend..needs to be encouraged!

nagrajprabhu's picture

Decentralized Solid Waste management for Tier I, II, III cities


The discussion thread on waste is quite interesting and I see there are few enthusiasts who would like to do more than just segregating waste.

I have been a stouch proponent of decentralized waste management for the following obvious reasons.

- Save on logistics (trucks, employees, fuel etc)

- save on Landfills, foul smell, ground water pollution, bad air quality.

As part of waste management in HAL III stage I did come across quite a few instances of corruption, contractor lobby etc in managing waste. Some of these instances really make you sad and do not inspire you do anything further.  Because you have a job that you need to do well which is paying you. Unless you are retired and have enough time to do several trips to BBMP and other related offices.

So, after doing few months of thankless job of encouraging segregation at source to some 200 families, doing door to door collection of waste, fighting with the street vendors and restaurants on illegal dumping, I figured out the following

- Do waste management in a gated community/apartment complexes. Do it discretely. do not imply to pourakarmikas that you are stealing away their job

- Managing waste can be production of biogas, compost etc.

I have been working on a model of rotating composter which can convert the kitchen waste into compost.

So, whoever is interested in teaming up with me or others who have ideas where I can pitch in some of my experience, it would be great.

There are several communities begging for a solution to end this social menace -  waste



Bet the Change you want to see!


Nagraj Prabhu
Be the change you want to see!

bikram satpathi's picture

pl look up

pl look up for kitchen waste. KODAVA samaj nr Cantonment stn is using similar mechanism for yrs.

Would like to see your composter drg. give me some idea.

nagrajprabhu's picture

ARTI is a good concept - but works for individual household

The ARTI methodology does not suite well for the apartment communities.

I have got in touch with them and I was not fully convinced with the approach they have laid out for the bigger community such as apartment complexes.

I am yet to check out the Kodava Samaj. But they are producing bio-gas from kitchen waste which is slightly expensive for the apartment communities to get convinced in terms of keeping aside a budget for such project implementation.

I can send you the diagram of the current composter and the improvisation that I am looking for.

I need some help with respect to mechanical aspect of the composter and of course some help with fabrication of the unit.

Please provide me you email Address




Nagraj Prabhu
Be the change you want to see!

ssheragu's picture

help for fabrication



to be honest I have not gone through your post in detail or on regular basis

but regarding fabrication,  you may contact some industrial units located in Peenya area or HAL area; I can help you with these; you may contact me if you desire


Many thanks


Srinath Heragu

nagrajprabhu's picture

Thank you!

Dear Srinath,

I will be calling you tommorrow in this regard.



Nagraj Prabhu
Be the change you want to see!

nagrajprabhu's picture

No Response

Dear Srinath,

I tried calling you on your mobile # today during the afternoon break. But no one receieved the call.

Will try to get in touch with you tomorrow.

My contact information is 9900222345



Nagraj Prabhu
Be the change you want to see!

AMW's picture


Dear All,

Please, try and inform as many people as possible to liven up the discussions. It is definately interesting to note the concerns coming up.

Have any of you heard of they have a solution for home composting! This can be done in every apartment.



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bikram satpathi's picture

ewaste is not handled by BBMP

     Correction        We have  a colony of 540 units & our E-Waste has ben collected by E-Waste Recycler ( auth by Kar State Pollution Control Board) for over 2 yrs. One item missed out by every one is Tube lights. TL has tiny amounts of Mercury which is a Neuro toxin. Tiny amounts become a flood over time that too in your habitat area. Must have seen dead tube lights lying all over the road side. BBMP does not handle E-Waste separately. We residents have to look after our selves. 

The arrangement is to place  spl E-Waste drum   in your premises and content collected periodicaly. All this for Rs 2000 one time cost. This covers cost of drum + poster + periodic collection all over Bangalore. E-Waste Recyclers do not go for residents in a big way. But we have managed to reach out to colonies / apartments for this job.

We are two residents of Kalyannagar and have manged to spread the message ..

Spread this message. (tube lights  / CFLs are deadly left on the roadside) JOIN E-WASTE DRIVE...Want to learn what exactly is wrong with unattended e-Waste ..Mercury and Lead are heavy metals a hazardous addition to environment when added to land fill.

BBMP has given the job of Garbage collection to private contractors. E-Waste is TOXIC. Dumping in Landfill or Back yard recycling only adds to environmental disaster. This issue of separate collection / dismantling is being done under guidance of MIN ENV Forests and Cen Pollution Control Board.

 This has been added since there are views why dont we give ewaste to BBMP or why doesnt the Recycler pay us because Recycler makes money out of our ewaste .

Note Polluter pays. When you throw out TOXIC matter you are the Polluter.


AMW's picture

RE: ewaste is not handled by BBMP

It is true regarding TUBELIGHTS shouldn't you insist the lamp manufacterer should pay for it. The PHILIPS & SURYA's of the world should help create the infrastructure for this business to survive. Just a few societies collecting tubelights is not enough. What happens after this needs an entire team?

safe collection without breakage from location of generation like homes, offices etc, proper breakage of lamps within a safe environment, storage until shipment to the nearest recycling plant. This business needs huge volumes which can only be funded by lamp manufactering companies. Will any individual want to pay for a FEDEX kind of collection service for his used lamps? I don't think so! Free collection service, well that would be motivating!

Can anyone shed light on these processes with data & pictures?


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bikram satpathi's picture

ewaste is not handled by BBMP

Take back arrangement can be dictated by Min of Env using Hazardous rules. Nokia, WIPRO and others have take back feature for cell phones - computer -printer. That is Printed Circuit Board. Haz Rules say what all can be put in Landfill. It says ground water near landfill or otherwise is to be tested for what all contents ( lists a lot of components in ewaste items - lead, mercury, chromium...). State Pollution control Board has given land to several parties to set up plants for ewaste.They buy up Ewaste from Corporates

Our effort is to garner support from residents / schools etc to set a trend. Actual improvised machinery to extract / pulverise tube lights in in place. New  EWASTE plant has been set up in ROORKEE. Imported ones cost a lot. Brown Univ researchers have identified Nano tubes of Selenium which absorb Mercury. Cloth impregnated with this can be used to carry / store dead - live tube lights. Mercury can then be extracted elsewhere. 

Bangalore has 3 colleges & IISc wher nanotube research - study is conducted. Get onto all such areas where research into environmental issues can be taken up. One may even get some fund from Min Env..Some colleges even cover Environmental studies.

Private manufacturers of CFL / tubelight have all the know how but are not obligated to worry about CSR. CEMA (GE) Gujarat has Mercury Management but it covers what is used in their premises. Our drive has worked fine in a small way.  We are collecting not free but at low rates. I am just a resident. I can suggest to one recycler in our area who covers all bangalore and beyond.  Chages are Rs 2000 per Bin with poster and periodic collection. If residents don't join this drive no problem items (toxic ) will get into the env and problem will be seen by the generations to follow. We owe this to generations to follow. BBMP dumps all into Landfill. 

Look up MINAMATA tragedy.

AMW's picture

RE: ewaste is not handled by BBMP

I would agree that the private players should be supported if there is no CSR initiatives by the corporates.

Rs. 2000/- p.a. is hardly anything for such services. Although societes have to be patient in gathering enough quantities to justify profitable collection.

We have to specify together a METHOD STATEMENT which specifies the flow of the 2-3 types of collection to disposal cycle and the minimum fee to be levied per TYPE OF LAMP.

Better still some areas should have a collection point where people can come at any time and dispose their lamps safely without supervision. From the collection point the RECYCLER or LOGISTICS VENDOR can collect the lamps for transportation to their final or Semi-Final areas. Some countries have their nearest grocery store or fuel station as such a point!

We have to invite the recycling companies to participate in this discussion officially! Anybody knows people in this business!! This way we will get feedback on their concerns as well!

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