Chhimi Dema  

To celebrate the seventh birth anniversary of His Royal Highness The Gyalsey, a cleanliness drive in four dzongkhags was launched yesterday. The drive aims to encourage people to keep the environment and highways clean.

The cleanliness drive was launched by Clean Bhutan, the Department of Surface Transport and Project DANTAK.

According to a press release from Project DANTAK, the members would pick up trash along Thimphu to Paro highway weekly; Damchu to Damthang, Haa to Paro, and Paro to Drugyel Dzong monthly; Phuentsholing to Chuzom fortnightly, and Samdrupjongkhar to Trashigang monthly.

DANTAK’s chief engineer, Brigadier Jaswinder Singh, said that the cleanliness drive was in line with the thought process of His Majesty The King to keep the country clean and green.

He said that the drive also aims to instil a sense of cleanliness in the youth of the country.

The press release stated that Project DANTAK working with the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport would clean the highways, and clean Bhutan would advocate proper waste management.

Brigadier Jaswinder Singh said, “If we can keep these roads clean, we feel that we would have done our bit in contributing towards the cleanliness of Bhutan.”

Project DANTAK maintains about 600km of road in Bhutan.

He said that cleaning the Thimphu-Paro and Thimphu-Phuentsholing highways which receive heavy traffic would make local and international travellers feel a clean environment.

To address the waste issue, Project DANTAK is also working on building roads with plastics.

Clean Bhutan’s executive director, Nedup Tshering, said that this is a good initiative that would study the frequency and amount of waste littered along the highways.

He said that the volume of waste generated is low in the country but its management is “very poor”.

He added that discontinuing waste management initiatives, and lack of human resources and funds are challenges in proper waste management.

Nedup Tshering said that waste management takes one generation to solve the problem.