Hyderabad: Heading towards the exit of a hall after attending a function, marriage or get-together, remember the sight of use-and-throw plastic cups, plastic glasses and plastic spoons strewn all over?
Spearheading the campaign against plastic in the city, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) is now coming up with a unique concept, ‘cutlery banks’, which will target functions and events where the use of plastic is high.
For the purpose of curtailing the use of plastic, mainly in the form of single use spoons, cups and glasses at events and functions, the civic body is roping in self-help groups (SHGs) to provide an alternative.
These banks set up and operated with the involvement of SHGs will supply steel spoons, cups, and water glasses and other smaller utensils on a nominal rent of Rs.100 per day. Those organising birthdays, marriages, community get-togethers can avail of the ‘cutlery banks’ services for these smaller utensils instead of bringing in bundles of plastic ones, officials said. “The rental is very nominal too,” the official said.
In the GHMC limits, there are 42,925 SHGs and over five lakh women enrolled as members in these groups. Each group has an enrolment of 10 to12 members.
The GHMC arranges interest-free loans for these groups, which are currently operating tailoring outlets, petty shops, general stores and other businesses with minimal investments.
Good track record
A majority of the groups have good track record of repayment and the civic body is now planning to arrange loans for the groups to set up ‘cutlery banks’. “The groups will be repaying the loans through the rent generated by offering the cutlery for functions,” said Moosapet Deputy Commissioner, V Mamatha.
Coordination meetings are being conducted with resident welfare associations, private supplying companies and SHGs to iron out the final details of the project. While private supplying companies will be free to supply big and heavy utensils required for cooking, the SHGs will be supplying cups, spoons, water glasses, etc. “There will not be any clash of interest,” she said.
Interested people can approach the SHGs for cutlery and obtain the same by furnishing their details. After utilizing the utensils, these will have to be washed and cleaned and returned. As a precautionary measure, nominal deposit may also be made mandatory, officials said, adding that modalities were being finalised.