The Nerul village panchayat has become the first panchayat in Saligao constituency to start door-to-door garbage collection. The panchayat has received Rs 15 lakh under the 14th Finance Commission funds from the central government. The garbage collection was kick-started by the Minister for Housing Jayesh Salgaonkar at Nerul on Monday.
The Goa Waste Management Corporation (GWMC) officials made a presentation on segregation of waste to the villagers in the panchayat hall. GWMC executive member Nathan Vaz said that the plant is working at its full capacity and treats 150 tonne garbage a day which is brought from 28 villages of North Goa and also the coastal belt and urged people to segregate waste to ease their burden and save time.
There are 36 women employed at the plant to segregate waste but people hand over mixed waste sometimes consisting of needles and glass pieces and the workers end up sustaining injuries. Vaz advised villagers to wrap the needles and glass pieces in paper and then in plastic sheets to avoid injury to the plant workers. He also asked villagers to keep tube lights and bulbs, e-waste like computers, TVs and other electronic items separately.
Parish priest of Nerul Fr Bolmex said that neither the government nor the panchayat can work wonders with regards to the garbage as many presentations and awareness programmes have been organised but to no avail. He said that the only way to resolve the problem of haphazard garbage dumping is imposing heavy fine and bringing in legislation to punish culprits.
Minister for Housing Jayesh Salgaonkar praised the village panchayat for its efforts to tackle garbage issue starting with a tri-cycle. He said that the Nerul beach has attained place on the international map and the village needs to be garbage-free to attract tourists. He said that villagers need to spread awareness on Whatsapp instead of creating negative propaganda and assured that he will impress upon the government to bring in a legislation to impose heavy fine.
Nerul sarpanch Piedade Almeida told the gathering that the village panchayat was also the first to get an award from the government to start collection of dry waste which was started in 2014.
The deputy sarpanch of Nerul Sandeep said that the owners giving their rooms on rent should take up the responsibility to see to it that the tenants segregate garbage and keep it in the bins issued by the village panchayat.