Mangaluru, Feb 28, 2017: Reports indicate that Tarjindar Singh, chief operating officer (COO) of Antony Waste Handling Cell Pvt Ltd, on Feb 27, Monday denied that the company has failed to fulfil most of the tender conditions laid down by the MCC, Mangaluru City Corporation. The company is tasked with the door-to-door collection and disposal of waste.
Addressing media persons here, Singh who was happy to acknowledge that the firm has completed two years of its service in Mangaluru beginning from February 15, 2015, however, said, "It’s still a learning phase and we want to go from better to best. The firm has a full-fledged contract for seven years."
Reacting to queries over a recent protest staged by labourers engaged in lifting and dumping waste over delay in payment of salary, Singh asserted that the funds is not an issue, as it has to be managed by both; the company and the MCC. Initially, when the operation started, both had agreed to go on 50:50 basis. However, the corporation kept some part of the money as retention money, but that would not be a hurdle in continuing with the service. The firm has invested Rs 35 crore to Rs 40 crore on purchasing equipment itself, he added. Measures being taken to improvise the service, including sweeping machines, Singh said.
Singh, however, categorically denied that the firm is bound by contract to lift unsegregated waste, while it is the duty of the waste generators at source to do so. When it comes to classification of waste, either wet or dry waste, due preference will be given to the former, he added.
On the complaints made by a section of the workers, who claim to be unaware of provident fund (PF) deduction from their salaries, Singh denied any malpractices, as the salaries are credited directly to the bank accounts of the workers against settling the same in cash mode earlier. On the issue of overtime (OT) work hours, Singh said the workers should enquire at the office.
In all 700 to 800 workers are on rolls, that may vary upwards during rainy season, due to more desiltation works taken up, he said.
Abdulla Rehman of Anti-pollution drive (APD) foundation, an NGO, handling information, education and communication (IEC) activities for the company, explained about various measures taken to create awareness among the people.