Dhanbad Municipal Corporation’s CEO Ashok Kumar Banka. (Gautam Dey)
Dhanbad Municipal Corporation has rekindled the hope of a cleaner coal capital with the appointment of its new chief executive officer (CEO) after almost six months.
Meet Ashok Kumar Banka, a 1980-batch officer of Bihar Public Service Commission who was transferred here from the post of under secretary in the department of animal husbandry and fisheries. He took charge as the CEO on July 15.
Banka, who is in Ranchi to hand over charge to his successor in the animal husbandry department, told The Telegraph over phone on Thursday that he would return to the coal town on either Friday or Saturday and start work.
Charting out his priorities, the new CEO said, “When I visited Dhanbad for the first time on July 15, I found heaps of garbage dumped at many places. Due the rains, passing by the mounds of garbage is an olfactory challenge. I was appalled by the state of sanitation and cleanliness in the coal capital. Therefore, the focus of my work will naturally be sanitation.”
Banka also suggested a more decentralised way of working to tide over manpower crunch that has been plaguing the civic body for long.
“I believe that the responsibility of cleaning should be given to the local communities, while the municipal corporation should take care of the funding,” he added.
After the exit of cleaning agency A2Z in January, the onus of sanitation work in Dhanbad, Sindri and Chatabad came on DMC.
Unable to manage, DMC sought temporary help from Mada to carry out sanitation in Jharia and Katras.
Before Banka was appointed, Awdhesh Kumar Pandey had served as the CEO from February 2012 to August 2013 before he got transferred. After him, Balmukund Jhar was appointed as the new CEO in October 2013, but he too was transferred in February this year. Since then the chair has been lying vacant with additional district magistrate of Dhanbad B.P.L. Das serving as the in-charge CEO.
Banka’s tenure will be over in February 2015.