Hyderabad: "Why blame the GHMC? Instead, we can do something on our own" though the residents of Aparna Cyber Life apartment complex in Nallagandla when faced with the task of disposing their kitchen waste.

Of the 903 apartments in Aparna Cyber Life, 60-70 residents took part in the pilot vegetable waste composting initiative that started three months ago. The pilot project, which is optional, urged interested residents to segregate their household wastes into dry and wet waste. The wet waste collected was further processed at the Organic Waste Convertor (OWC) plant installed behind the complex.

Sampada Kulkarni, a member of the apartment association involved in the initiative, says now it has become a habit. "Even if someone asks me not to do it (contribute my vegetable waste for composting) for two days, I will not feel good," says Sampada. She hopes to encourage more residents to feel the same way.

"If not treated properly, eventually it (kitchen waste) is going to end up in landfills," says Vijay Ivaturi, another resident.

Sampada adds, "It's a mess when you dump everything in one place." Landfills turn the area unhygienic, polluting the water and making the lives of nearby residents difficult. "Rather than blaming the GHMC, we thought about what we could do. And thus the idea of kitchen waste composting was born," says Vijay.

The compost gets prepared within 40-50 days.

"Really excited to see the first batch of kitchen waste converted into compost," tweeted Vijay on the success of their months-long effort. The pilot project produced around 500 kg of compost.

"It feels good to have our own compost," says Sampada.

The association is planning to distribute the manufactured compost among the residents. "Many of them have their own balconies and mini gardens. This compost can be used for those plants," says Sampada.

Also, the apartment complex has a lot of green spaces. The association plans to use the rest for the horticultural needs of these green spaces.

Nimisha S Pradeep

Hailing from Palakkad, Kerala, Nimisha completed her MA in Communication (with a specialization in Print and New Media) from the University of Hyderabad. She has interned with The Hindu Metroplus, Chennai and The Sentinel, Assam. She was a fellow of the NFI Fellowship for Independent Journalists in 2021. In 2015, she attended the Jenesys Student Exchange Programme in Japan. She firmly believes in the power of words and the impact it can make on society. She looks forward to using her career in journalism to voice the issues of minorities. Her interest areas include gender, women and society. She pursues travel, photography, and music in her leisure time.

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