Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Controversy surrounds increased maintenance costs of CCS units

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The Closed Compactor System (CCS) units implemented by the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC) to streamline waste management by compressing and transporting garbage efficiently, minimising environmental impact less than five years ago are now under scrutiny, with officials raising concerns about increased maintenance costs and suspicions of favouritism towards a single contractor. The GVMC, responsible for waste management in the city generating about a thousand tonnes of garbage daily, is facing allegations of doubling the maintenance costs without a proportional rise in diesel prices or staff salaries.
CCS units were initially introduced in 2018 at waste disposal centres in Town Kotta Road and Gajuwaka under Zone-4. However, recent reports suggest a spike in maintenance costs from Rs.1.4 crore to a staggering Rs 3 crore in less than two years, raising eyebrows among officials and citizens alike. Despite stable diesel prices and marginal increases in staff salaries, doubts are surfacing regarding the sudden and substantial increase in maintenance expenses. Critics argue that proposals are being presented to officials, who then greenlight them without proper scrutiny, allegedly contributing to the doubled costs.
The controversy deepens with accusations of collusion between GVMC officials from the mechanical and public health departments and the contractor overseeing CCS management. The same contractor has consistently been awarded the responsibility since the system’s inception, excluding other potential bidders due to stringent experience requirements. Additionally, concerns have been raised about officials utilising private vehicles under the pretext of emergencies, incurring significant additional costs for the GVMC.
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