Ganpati leaves behind 480 metric tonnes of garbage

Civic officials to spend Rs 12.5 lakh to sift through piles of garbage and send it for decomposing

The city bid farewell to Ganpati on Sunday, and after the revelry came to an end and the music stopped playing, what the city is facing is nearly 480 metric tonnes of garbage. And in an attempt to go green, the one-day garbage collected by the civic authority will not be dumped, but will be sorted out and sent in for decomposing. Of the 480 metric tones, 250 tonnes consists of the nirmalaya -- the flowers used for the festival. "There are fixed sites for this activity," said an official from the BMC's solid waste management. The decomposition will take place at Rani Baug, Bandra, Gorai and Andheri (West).

Mounds of trash: A rag-picker collects plastic bags and flowers from
the banks of Powai lake

But all this will not be light on the pockets of the civic body. Authorities will spend nearly Rs 12.5 lakh, as it costs Rs 5,000 for one metric tonne. "Last year too, this volume of garbage was collected and sent for decomposition," said Chief Engineer of Solid Waste Management B Patil.

Keeping it green
And with keeping with the theme of being eco-friendly, a rise in the usage of artificial lakes for immersion was recorded this year. As compared to last year, 1,543 more idols were immersed in artificial lakes this year. According to the BMC, 13,829 idols were immersed in the 24 artificial lakes compared to 12,286 that were immersed in 2010.

Deputy municipal commissioner Dr K Kshirsagar, in charge of the immersions this year, said, "We had informed the mandals to immerse their idols in artificial lakes, and also there has been quite a lot of awareness about it.

Although there were no takers for them earlier, this year we had conversations with the mandal committees who have spread the message."

Safest fest
BMC's Standing Committee Chairman Rahul Shewale said that there were no cases of drowning reported on Sunday. Dr Rahman Mahaldar, who runs a medial camp at Girgaum Chowpatty said, "Fortunately this year we got only 20 to 25 cases for first aid. No drowning cases or any serious injuries were reported. This time police and the BMC disaster management cell managed the crowds very well. Even the crowd at the beach was very less compared to last few years."

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