Solid Waste Management

Slums are everywhere in Indian cities. They are home to the distress migrant labourers from village for livelihood, and such migration is ever increasing in India. These migrants are unskilled and can only offer physical labour to join the unorganized sector of urban economy.

India generates 100 – 150 KT of solid waste per day, most of which is organic waste. Plastic, paper and glass together comprise ~16% of solid waste and are picked for recycling by rag pickers. These rag pickers are a key part of the informal scrap market, which is sized at INR 35 – 50 billion per year. Mostly women from dalit and tribal community, who in absence of other livelihood options have taken up rag picking for survival and for supplementing family income. They are easy prey for big traders in rag cycling sector. Rag pickers collect all kinds of solid waste from households and from roads. Their service is never acknowledged as service; however, their collection of urban solid waste is an important component of urban solid waste management. Garbage is dumped out in the open largely on the outskirts of cities or by the roadside. Since mechanized facilities for separating recyclable material from this waste are almost non-existent, the waste pickers accomplish the task manually.

 

Background

During efforts to develop commercially sustainable market led models for promoting livelihoods of the poor, Vijay Mahajan, one of the founding members of PRADAN, realized that access to finance was a major bottleneck. Thus in 1995, Vijay Mahajan and his team at IGS, designed and piloted within Indian Grameen Services (IGS), a parallel set up to the banking system in India to ensure hassle free access to financial services especially for the poor. In 1996, IGS pioneered the joint liability group (JLG) model for lending to farmers. This led to setting up of Bhartiya Samruddhi Finance Limited (BSFL), India’s first micro finance institution (MFI). Next, IGS experimented with the idea of creating financial intermediation models that raise funding resources from financial markets using community resources as leverage. Thus, Sarvodaya Nano Finance Limited (SNFL) and Anik Financial Services Pvt. Ltd. were set up in 1996 as MFIs wholly owned by rural communities. In 2001, IGS set up Krishna Bhima Samruddhi Local Area Bank (KBSLAB) on a saving led model. Following this in 2003, Livelihood and Microfinance Program (LAMP) Fund was created as a fund within IGS to provide financial product for supporting small & nascent organisations. Later in 2010, IGS incubated the business correspondent model and set up Sub-K.

Outreach

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