Last week, Nelamangala Town Municipal Council general body unanimously passed a resolution for inclusion of wastepickers in waste management. Nelamangala is a small town, located in Bangalore (rural) district, with a population of 37,232. The city generates around 7 tons of waste a day and has around 80-100 wastepickers. Town Municipal Council has agreed to enumerate the wastepickers and issue them the occupational identity cards. With this Nelamangala will be the second city in Karnataka to do the same, after Bengaluru. All this has been possible because of the pro-active participation of Town Council Environmental Engineer Mr. Lohith D. and the organising efforts of activists of Hasiru Dala, Thimmaraju A.G. and Sowbhagya.
Town Council has also agreed to facilitate social security measures like Rashtriya Swasthya Beema Yojna (RSBY) – National Health Insurance Scheme, scholarship for children of parents’ working in clean occupations and housing to the wastepickers. Safety gears like gloves, masks and gum boots will be provided to them. Their inclusion in door to door collection of waste will also be pursued
This is the second step in the efforts for streamlining the solid waste management in the city. The Municipal Council is keen to retrieve recyclables from waste. To do that they have installed Dry Waste Collection Center. The center began its operations on 31st July, 2015 and is receiving 250 kg- 300 kg of recyclable waste for sorting and sale. It is allotted to an erstwhile wastepicker- Dhanlakshmi, who with her three other colleagues run the center. Managerial support to run it is provided by Hasiru Dala. In the recent resolution Municipal Council has also decided to provide basic infrastructure needed for operations in the center.