Swachh Survekshan 2019 rewarding wrong end of waste management?

  1. A study by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) has reported that Swachh Survekshan rankings are flawed. The study has found that the ranking system was skewed towards cities that had only recently adopted various cleanliness measures. The survey has ranked many cities poorly despite these cities adopting all-year round measures to promote cleanliness.
  2. The study has found that top-performing cities under Swachh Survekshan still practice unsustainable waste management practices such as dumping in landfills. Examples include Ujjain (rank 4), Ahmedabad (6), and Ghaziabad (13). On contrary, cities in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Goa, Sikkim that have made efforts towards more sustainable waste management have been ranked poorly.
  3. Further, the study advocates that comparing waste management of large metro cities with that of small cities is largely flawed. This is because the issues that a metro city faces are very different from those of a small city.
  4. Swachh Survekshan is a ranking exercise to assess rural and urban areas for their levels of cleanliness and active implementation of Swacch Bharat Mission. The objective of the survey is to a) encourage large scale citizen participation and create awareness about cleanliness, b) inculcate a spirit of healthy competition among cities and towns towards creating cleaner cities/towns. The survey was launched in 2016.
  5. The Ministry of Urban Development takes up the Swachh Survekshan in urban areas while Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation takes up the survey in rural areas.
  6. Indore (Madhya Pradesh) has been awarded the cleanest city in the country in the Swachh Survekshan 2019.