Bengaluru Rains: 'Banned Plastic Bags Still Finding Way To Choke Our Drains...' Complains Resident

Bengaluru Rains: 'Banned Plastic Bags Still Finding Way To Choke Our Drains...' Complains Resident

Thunderstorms and rains continue in several parts of Bengaluru leading to water logging, traffic congestions and choked up drains due to huge disposal of plastic

Ruddhi PhadkeUpdated: Wednesday, May 15, 2024, 09:21 AM IST
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Bengaluru: Heavy rainfall and thunderstorms have been lashing the city of Bengaluru since past few days. While the unexpected rainfall has brought in breather for the city residents from a long spell of scorching heat, commuters are facing severe hardships with waterlogging and traffic disruptions wreaking havoc across the city.

Moreover, with continued unlimited disposal of plastic bags in the drains of the city has lead to huge accumulation which is now making it a cause of concern for the residents. The big question is whether to blame the residents who are using the banned plastic bags or the authorities for waste management system?

Residents complain choked drains due to disposal of banned plastic

Anurag Tagat, a journalist and a Bengaluru resident said, " Just a few weeks into finally getting much needed rain in Bangalore, just driving along the road you could see all drains already being blocked by plastic objects like bags and bottles. Plastic bags are banned in the city, yet they are finding a way to choke our drains and water logging is almost immediately seen after even half an hour's rain."

He further said, "As it is, there's a lot of traffic congestion on the roads but these rains make commuting even more burdensome. The roads are already in a state and now the BBMP will only get into gear to fill potholes. The city needs regular drain cleaning and more fines imposed on those who dispose plastic waste into drains."

BBMP banned usage of plastic bags in 2023

In September 2023, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike’s (BBMP) solid waste management department had issued an order banning the use of single-use plastic items in places like schools, colleges and temple trusts falling under the Palike limits, in accordance with Plastic Waste Management Rules-2016. . 

The larger issue explained

Swarna Venkatraman, Civic Volunteer with I Change Indiranagar a citizen activist forum in Bengaluru said, “disposal of plastic is definitely a major problem however, the BBMP is doing a great job with getting everything cleaned and avoiding choking of drains due to massive disposal of plastic. They are actually doing their job. What I feel is we need strong enforcement agencies who could take strict action against offenders. Will the same person who litters here throw things here and there i. USA? No there is fear for law.”

‘Most lakes are man-made’

Swarna Venkatraman also highlighted that disposing plastic is just one of the many factors that are adding to the chaos in Bengaluru amid heavy downpours.  Swarna said,”Most of the lakes in Bengaluru are not natural and they are manmade. Gravity helps water move and hence a city level geographical study will lead to effective planning of directing water in an appropriate way thereby helping prevent flooding. Also falling trees due to gusty winds is a bigger problem than choked drains in Bengaluru at the moment.”

What should Mumbai learn from Bengaluru?

VJTI Civil engineer and EX BMC employee Mahesh Phadke said, “Laws are in place and BMC has been taking up clean up drives and employees and volunteers have always been on their toes to get the black pockets cleaned, however stringent fines or action against those who litter and often dodge the disciplinary  protocols will help prevent such massive disposal of plastic that may lead to larger problems during heavy rains.”

Despite measures being taken by the authorities in direction towards better waste management, lack of urge of citizens to cooperate is one of the factors add to the chaos in any city when such unexpected rains give a surprise check. 

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