Ambikapur, a town of less than two lakh population in Chhattisgarh, is leading the way in modern garbage collection and disposal. Its solid waste management is emerging as a model for others States. The town in north Chhattisgarh’s Surguja district shot to limelight this year by securing second place in Swachh city ranking. It has the country’s first digitised garbage management system, has freed itself of dustbins, and recently launched a garbage café, where you can get a full meal in exchange for one kg of plastic waste.
The café, like most other waste management schemes of Ambikapur, is a first in the country. It has become so efficient in making the best use of plastic that a 1.5 km-long road in Ambikapur has been made entirely of plastic granules manufactured at its own plant.
Ambikapur generates 45 metric ton (MT) solid waste everyday, which was earlier piled up on a 16 acre dumping ground, about 3.5 km from ground. Now, it has been converted into a park by Ambikapur Municipal Corporation (AMC) as the town doesn’t need dump sites.
The corporation’s solid liquid resource management (SLRM) has transformed the city. “It was renowned environmentalist C Srinivasan who led the foundation of SLRM in Ambikapur. A team of AM officials visited SLRM site he had developed in a village in South India. The idea was modified according to the needs of the Ambikapur city and there has been no looking back since,” Ambikapur mayor Dr Ajay Tirkey said.