The issues of cleanliness and sanitation have been addressed by the Assam state government's initiative of the Swachh Bharat Mission has been widely acclaimed.
Garbage Dumpsites have become a massive problem for most urban cities, however, in a bid to overcome the barrier, North Lakhimpur has become a role model by becoming the first town in Assam to successfully treat 70,000 MT of legacy waste and converting a massive 16 bigha land situated in the middle of the city into a free utility space for the public.
Speaking exclusively to India Today NE, Manab Deka, BJP MLA from Lakhimpur said, "For several garbage used to be dumped at a designated place in the heart of the town."
Further in 2022, in the absence of the elected municipal body, the MLA along with the deputy commissioner of the district decided to start with the legacy waste management plant with municipal funds which were around 70,000 MT.
Always appreciate your efforts to work for the people @himantabiswa Sir.— MANAB DEKA /মানৱ ডেকা (@manabdeka) March 8, 2023
It's because of your support and vision that motivate us to work even harder for our people.
Together we will make the vision of #SwachLakhimpur a reality. https://t.co/IQlSXfsbug
"Being a politician it's a risky business to invest money in garbage waste because people do criticise the funding but we took it as a challenge and with a goal to keep our town clean," Deka added.
Following this tenders were issued and were given to local parties along with the BPJ government's involvement in clearing the legacy waste within 8-9 months of time.
Speaking on the treatment of the legacy waste, the MLA said that from the waste products, three components were derived- the plastic waste was sent to Dalmia cement company in Meghalaya for which government didn't avail any monetary benefits, however, as per the National Green Tribunal's (India) agreement cement company must use it as fuel.
The second component which was derived- was organic waste which could be regarded as manure has been sold to farmers and locals at Rs 600 per tractor as per the municipal norms.
Thirdly the last component which was derived- has been basically used by people for earth filling which people also buy at a reasonable price.
The MLA also asserted that the positive impact of the project is nothing but a massive 16 bigha of land has been now cleared off in the heart of the town near the Shiva temple area and will be now transformed into a playground and also be used for organising meetings and cultural events.
Speaking on the day-to-day which is produced from households ranging from 30-40 MT, a new solid waste management plant has been placed with new modern machinery wherein the state government is assisting the ambitious project.
"From the month of April onwards the plant will go in full fledge manner following which there will be no legacy waste in the Lakhimpur...we are also started an awareness drive wherein we are asking people to segregate the waste at home itself, " said MLA Deka.
"This is all possible because of PM Modi's vision for Swach Bharat Mission and Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma and cabinet minister Ashok Sighal's continuous guidance...must also applaud Sumit Sattawan, DC Lakhimpur and Kavitha Padmanabhan, Principal secretary urban for supporting this initiative," he added.
The MLA also mulled producing compressed natural gas from the bio-waste products and talks are already in place with Oil India Limited.
"If 10 MT organic waste can be accumulated in one day then 5 MT natural gas can be produced along with a buyback policy, however, we have to see how much organic waste is accumulated " he added.
The remediation of the legacy waste will facilitate the treasure of the area which is currently buried under decades-old waste. Swachh Bharat Mission is constantly working on designing sustainable waste management systems to ensure scientific waste processing of 'Garbage Free Cities' and a circular economy from waste.
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