Deputy Mayor of Shimla Municipal Corporation (SMC), Tikendra Singh Pawar today said the data of ‘Swachh Survekshan-2017 (cleanliness survey)’ needs to be comprehended properly. “Shimla has performed phenomenally well and secured 47th rank out of 500 cities, but the matrix drawn for such a survey is faulty and did not help the mountain cities.
“In fact Shimla ranked first among cities with population of two lakh to 10 lakh and happens to be in the fourth position in the entire northern region,” he said. Pointing out that the cost of infrastructure development was almost four times in the hills as compared to plains posed a different challenge, Pawar said.
In Shimla, just 25 per cent houses are connected through roads and the general policy direction is not to have motorable roads everywhere owing to reasons like increasing vulnerability of landslides, making the mountains more susceptible to climate change, he said, adding that the matrix must consider this important impediment.
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Further, in such a situation it is difficult to sustain door-to-door garbage collection for solid waste management as the vehicle would not reach every house warranting deployment of larger number of people, Pawar said.
Although, Shimla cannot match cities like Chandigarh but it has achieved almost 100 per cent door-to-door garbage collection, he said.
Similarly, the survey deals with toilets and there prevailing conditions but the fact is that the toilets are constructed in the town where water supply is given on alternate days different norms are required for towns like Shimla, he stressed.
The Urban Development Ministry had commissioned the survey for 500 cities and towns with population of 1 lakh and above in January and February this year. The results, however, were available for 434 cities and towns which were announced on Wednesday.