The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) plans to construct 22,000 community toilets in next three years for which they floated tenders recently. However, the bids received were more than 60 percent of the estimated project cost. So, tenders will be recalled, said Vishwas Shankarwar, Deputy Municipal Commissioner (DMC) of Solid Waste Management (SWM). The total estimated project cost is Rs 573 crore.
Currently in Mumbai there are 669 community toilets, 944 pay-and-use toilets. “Once the 22,000 community construction work of toilets kick-starts then in each ward around 900 toilets will be constructed under the project,” said the SWM official. Besides this, as per the new proposed plans, community toilets can be build multi-storeyed.
Another officer from SWM said the project tender is receiving lukewarm response from bidders and only a few have showed interest and that too above the estimated project cost. The main reason behind it is that the identified places for community toilets to be build are in slums areas. Therefore, more awareness will be done, so other contractors would know about the project and participate, added the official.
Similar to garbage transporting contractors in the city, who have been divided into different groups having two to three wards together depending on its size, the community toilets construction work has too been divided into groups. In this project, 38 different contractors will be hired to complete the set target.
Meanwhile, to provide citizens clean and hygienic toilets for use, the municipal corporation officials are also acting against errant, unclean pay-and-use toilet contractors against whom complaints have been received. According to the data from BMC, 44 out of 944 pay-and-use toilets located near railway stations, bus stops and others have been sent show causes notices.
DMC Shankarwar said two of the pay and use toilet contractors from H west ward (Bandra west) and E ward (Byculla) have been taken back from contractors by BMC for not maintaining the toilets properly. These toilets will be reconstructed and will be made free for public use. By renting the advertisements space the income will be generated which will be used for maintenance of these toilet blocks,” added another SWM official.