Tech push to waste collection - Cuttack Municipal Corporation to adopt GPRS tracking system

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  • Published 13.09.17

Sanitary workers load garbage for disposal in Cuttack. Picture by Badrika Nath Das

Cuttack, Sept. 12: The municipal corporation will adopt the GPRS tracking system for monitoring waste collection vehicles to ensure that they are following the assigned route and collecting garbage regularly.

The GPRS stands for General Packet Radio Service, which is the world's most commonly used wireless data service and available with nearly every GSM (Global System for Mobile communications) or cellular network. A GPRS vehicle-tracking device utilises the network to communicate information via Internet, which is then made accessible via whichever platform the system uses.

The GPRS tracking system is expected to ensure that the garbage pick-up vehicle drivers follow the route, achieving maximum collection of waste and show if there is any need of additional vehicles in any area. It will also help in case of vehicle breakdown or any other problem faced by the drivers for back-up vehicle to be sent immediately and check wastage in fuel or unnecessary usage of vehicles.

"The GPRS tracking system will be used as part of implementation of the Integrated Solid Waste Management Project by way of outsourcing the collection of municipal solid waste," municipal commissioner Bikash Mohapatra said.

The Cuttack Municipal Corporation had invited fresh tenders for executing the Rs 147.26 crore project for five years with October 9 as deadline for receiving the bids. "Under the project, the private party, who gets the contract, will have to use vehicles having GPRS system and central monitoring facility," Mohapatra said.

Municipal officials conceded that though the civic administration had fixed the routes for every waste pick-up vehicle in all wards, complete collection of waste was not achieved. There have been regular complaints that garbage collection vehicles do not collect waste regularly.

"With the GPRS tracking system, it will be easy for officers and other sanitary staff members at the ward level to maintain cleanliness in their wards," said Bikash Ranjan Behera, chairman of the civic body's standing committee for appeals and licence.

Rausapatna resident Sudhir Kanungo said: "If maximum collection is achieved, citizens will not need to dispose of their garbage at any place. The GPRS tracking system will be a positive initiative to keep the city clean."

As part of implementation of the Integrated Solid Waste Management Project, biometric attendance system will be installed in all individual wards, transfer station and control room for the employees, who will be engaged under it.

A central monitoring system of the biometric attendance will be installed and maintained at the civic body's headquarters, the project document released last week said.

"The biometric system aims to ensure transparency and force the sanitary workers as well as supervisors at wards level to discharge their duty in a more efficient manner so as to bring a change in the overall sanitation measures," said Ranjan Kumar Biswal, chairman of the corporation's standing committee for sanitation and health.

There are over 1.20 lakh households with nearly 6.3 lakh population in the municipal area spread over 152sqkm. Around 400 metric tonnes of municipal waste are generated in the city every day.

But, officials conceded that around a 100 metric tonnes were left uncollected as waste collection both from door-to-door and collection points in the city was not well organised.