Hi-tech watch to clock clean drive

Source: telegraphindia.com

Global Positioning System-enabled watches will keep tab on sanitary workers to ensure cleanliness in the state capital from September onward.

Ranchi Municipal Corporation (RMC) will hold a pre-bid meeting on July 17 of leading GPS-enabled watch manufacturing companies to take stock of the options before starting the process of selecting a private firm for supplying 2,100 watches.

The photographs and phone numbers of each sanitary worker will be taken for creating an ID in the monitoring system at the control room of the RMC, a senior official explained. The ID will help in tracking every worker. Each watch will also have a pulse detector to ensure that it is worn by the sanitary worker. If a worker gets out of the working area during duty hours, the control room will get a notification and action will be initiated against the worker.

The watch will also have a panic button, by pressing which workers will be able to directly communicate with higher officials of the civic body.

“We have formulated beat plan and roster for sanitary workers in cleaning of drains and roadside, lifting of garbage and collection of door-to-door waste. But the compliance part is monitored manually and there is always scope of human error or laxity,” municipal commissioner Manoj Kumar said on Wednesday.

“We plan to procure the GPS-enabled watches to keep track of the staff through computers installed at our control room to ensure beat plan and roster is maintained and the sanitary staff concerned would be easily identified for any deviation or missing from the beat/roster. We hope to selected the agency in a month or so and start distribution of such watches from September onward,” he added.

There are around 2,100 sanitary workers for cleaning of drains, sweeping of roads, collection of roadside garbage, door-to-door collection of waste. The beat/roster plans are made for cleaning to be carried out between 6.30am and 2pm, 3pm and 9pm, and 9pm and 4am.

Sources in the civic body said that the decision to procure GPS-enabled watches was taken following numerous complaints by residents of laxity and negligence by these cleaning and sanitary workers.

“After the RMC took over cleaning and lifting of garbage in all the 53 wards last month, there have been complaints that the staff do not adhere to the beat plan and roster. While a few lanes and drains are cleaned almost daily, others are cleaned once or twice in a week,” a senior RMC official said under cover of anonymity.

“As of now, our control room operators call up residents to inquire if lanes and drains are cleaned or not and rely on the report presented by the supervisors. However, the computerised monitoring will ensure that any laxity on the part of the sanitary worker is detected immediately and action taken promptly,” the official added.