NewsBytesExclusive: Indore Mayor talks about city's impressive cleanliness rank
In a Central government's cleanliness survey, Indore recently won the title of the cleanest city third time in a row. The journey of the city from 149th position to the top in the last five years is truly commendable. In an exclusive chat with NewsBytes, Indore's Mayor, Malini Gaur, talked about how collective efforts of the city helped it grab the title.
Conducted 500 meetings, worked on PM's vision, says Gaur
"Getting the first place for three years in a row is in itself great news. I'd like to thank the people, Indore Municipal Corporation team and cleaning staff," said Malini Laxmansingh Gaur, who took charge of Indore in 2015. Taking PM Narendra Modi's vision of clean India forward, she held more than 500 meetings with the people of the city to discuss the issue.
Gaur congratulated and thanked Indore, for support and participation
'Cleanliness was my priority when I became Mayor'
"When I was a legislator, I used to see a lot of garbage around the city. So, after taking the Mayor's office in 2015, that became my priority. In 2016, Indore jumped from 149th to the 25th position and never looked back," said Gaur.
Maintaining top position challenging, 'one mistake can turn things around'
It becomes difficult to retain the top position and Gaur feels the same. "We have always achieved bigger goals when it comes to cleanliness. Obviously, it is difficult to maintain it, especially now because all eyes are always on us." "One tiny mistake can turn things around. Our team and the citizens have worked hard to make this hat-trick a reality," she quipped.
People were taught how to segregate waste: Gaur
Though cleanliness is a way of life for the people of Indore now, it was not an easy task, said the Mayor. "I held more than 500 meetings with the resident associations, business associations, in schools and colleges," she said. "People were taught to segregate dry and wet waste," she added.
'Ensured on-spot fine is taken from those littering public places'
After she found the private company employed to keep Indore clean was not doing a good job, Gaur and her team "started door-to-door waste collection drive after terminating the private contractor." "We started with one ward and in just two months covered the whole city. We made sure that on-spot fine is taken from the people for littering on public places," the 57-year-old added.
Public places are cleaned twice a day, dustbins installed everywhere
After Indore became the economic capital, many people started shifting to the city, but Gaur ensured cleanliness is maintained. She has taken numerous steps in this regard. "We have installed dustbins for both wet and dry waste at different places throughout the city. And the public places are cleaned twice a day. Also, every shop has installed proper dustbins," she said.
Wet-waste used as natural compost, dry-waste gets recycled, says Gaur
"Not just dustbins, we have installed 12 road sweeping machines in the city and 150 people work towards deep cleaning," Gaur said. In order to ensure time management, the city has 10 garbage transfer stations. Waste segregation and recycling is treated as a priority. "We use the wet waste as natural compost and dry waste is separated for reuse or recycling," she said.
City's health improved, pollution level decreased in last three years
While talking of the positive impact, Gaur said, "Citizen's health is improving with less garbage on the streets. Medicines' sale has seen a drop of worth Rs. 25 crore because of the clean environment. The air pollution level has also come down by 42%."
Drafting plans to clean two polluted rivers, says Gaur
Gaur said teams of other cities visit Indore "to understand our work and efforts. We are planning to make an R&D Center to examine the work." "We are also drafting plans to clean the two rivers, which are currently very polluted, and bring them back to their original state," said the Mayor, adding her mission is to make "Honorable PM's dream come true."