A big goal for a small population

Gasa aims to become the cleanest dzongkhag 

Waste: Gasa might be the least developed or the last dzongkhag to receive basic facilities such as a paved road, fuel station, power and bus services, but the least populated dzongkhag thinks big.

Under the slogan “Gasa going clean” the dzongkhag has started holding a cleaning campaign on the first Thursday of every month. The aim is to become the cleanest of the 20 dzongkhags.

Gasa Dzongdag Dorji Dhradhul said the initiative was initially started sometime in December 2015, when the dzongkhag introduced the Green Gasa initiative.

During the event, dzongkhag officials and staff were given a green coloured bag that was sponsored by CSO Clean Bhutan. Dzongkhag officials take the bag everywhere they go and use it when they pick up litter. Unlike in other dzongkhags, in Gasa people have to walk almost everywhere they go. The intention was to make dzongkhag officials and staff take the lead and set an example for the people.

Dzongkhag officials said following that initiative, on December 9 last year, Gasa also joined the nationwide cleaning campaign. However, on that day, the dzongkhag also launched a programme and made a commitment that on the first Thursday of every month, the “Gasa going clean day” would be observed. The first dzongkhag tshogdu endorsed the initiative.

Following lunch break, officials and staff join locals to clean areas on the first Thursday of the month.

The Khatoed mangmi, Sangay Tashi, said on January 5, the dzongkhag collected around two DCM truck loads and two tractor loads of waste from within the dzongkhag area, town and Khatoed gewog. “The local people have shown immense interest for the initiative and came together to form various groups in all gewogs and the town to support the initiative,” said the mangmi.

“We are soon planning to come up with rules and regulations, which would have penalties too,” said the Gasa dzongdag. “Our objective is that if a government has made a commitment to make the country clean, the dzongkhags should take lead.”

Dzongdag Dorji Dhradhul added that given the small population in Gasa, it would be possible to achieve the objective.

Currently, waste is disposed at a temporary dumping site in Remi chiwog in Khatoed gewog. However, the location of a permanent dumping site in the same area has already been identified. The location is around 5km from the town.

Dawa Gyelmo | Gasa

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