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IIT Indore alumni, create history by managing solid waste at Baltal with zero landfill

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By: Javaid Bhatt VOV


Swaha Resource Management, a start up of IIT Indore alumni, who have been given the task of solid waste management at Baltal base camp have been able to manage the same as their company ‘Swaha Resource Management’ has been able to make the Amarnath yatra free of solid waste with zero landfill.

This is the first ever in the history of the country that a religious pilgrimage will be made sustainable and with zero landfill. The company has installed 12 machines at 1200 stations from Base camp to Holy cave with the deployment of 300 workers and employees. The machines are used for recycling of solid waste and conversion of leftovers from Langers into fertilizers at different axis of Baltal and Pahalgam route to ensure Swach Yatra.

Solid waste has been a big challenge for the Amarnathji Yatra as from the base camps, thousands of yatris pass through the ecologically fragile area.

Sensing the demand of the time for the first time at Baltal base camp near Sonmarg authorities were able to dispose of the entire solid waste generated by the yatra and it would be a big step for the environment of Sonmarg, Baltal and for the forests nearby which were facing a huge threat by the growing solid waste because of the huge human footfall.

Solid waste generated during Annual Shri Amarnathji Yatra has always been a grave threat to environment and difficult for administration to handle at Baltal Base camp and track en-route Holy Cave. However, this year for the first time in the history the yatra will be sustainable and have zero landfill which will set new protocols for cleanliness and waste management that suit the environment and spiritual nature of the journey.

Every year the pilgrims in lacks from various parts of Country proceed towards valley for Annual pilgrimage of Shri Amarnathji yatra from Nunwan base camp of Pahalgam and Baltal Base camp of  District Ganderbal,More than 7,000 pilgrims began to arrive every day at ecologically sensitive area Baltal Base camp an ecologically sensitive area surrounded by mountains and forests on the banks of famous Nallah Sindh.The yatra which continues for 45 days always posed   threat to  environment after the tons of solid waste is generated from temporary toilets, free kitchens (Langers) and other outlets established for the convenience of pilgrims at base camp and on the track enroute holycave.Earlier,the administration faced lot of difficulties to segregate biodegradable and nonbiodegradable waste and ensure proper disposal but this year scientific method has been adopted to mitigate the problem once for all.

Though the job will be challenging for the company which has to go for the waste management process at the altitude of 13000 fts as the company has worked on solid waste management in the events organized in towns only but the company seems confident to set an example which will be the first of its kind in a religious pilgrimage at such altitude.

According to the Government about 8 lakh devotees are expected to perform the pilgrimage this year and keeping in view the highest number ever witnessed, all the arrangements have been made to ensure smooth and peaceful yatra besides ecologically sensitivity has also been kept in priority by the initiative of scientific solid waste management.

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