Meet the waste warriors marking a positive impact on the environment

India generates millions of tonnes of waste each year, out of which the majority of waste is dumped in landfill sites. In 2030, it is predicted that urban municipal solid trash generation will increase to 165 million tonnes due to changing consumption patterns and strong economic expansion.

The problem is huge and needs long-term solutions.

Back in 2014, Anurag Asati and Kavindra Raghuwanshi founded The Kabadiwala – a scrap management tech platform. Bhopal-based Kabadiwala encourages people and businesses to recycle their waste by offering financial incentives and appealing to a stronger sense of community spirit.

The process is simple. One has to go to their platform, and look for what they can dispose of and at what price. One can schedule the pickup at their convenience, the company will collect and send the waste for recycling.

Incorporating waste workers from the informal sector, the Kabadiwala gradually began providing services to small to large businesses, corporations, and institutions with their Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR). They also helped the state government manage the city’s enormous dumps at the MRF Centers by assisting waste workers from the informal sector in receiving their due wages.

Not just a scrapping company

The company described its vision to bring a circular economy into a reality where used products are manufactured into new products to minimize the over-exploitation of natural resources and maximize recycling.

In addition to offering free door-to-door scrap collection services, The Kabadiwala manages four material recovery facilities in Bhopal that offer job opportunities to more than 100 rag pickers.

These garbage warriors separate waste and assist the company in recovering recyclable materials from the municipal landfill. They assist in diverting tonnes of priceless materials from landfills to the recycling sector. As per The Kabadiwala, at these MRF centres, the company tries and help improve the conditions of these ragpickers by:

  • Providing them with hygienic working conditions.
  • Provide them with safety gear like gloves, masks, sanitiser etc.
  • Provide training on safety standards and handling different categories of waste, especially hazardous waste.
  • Provide them with identity cards which empower and authorize them to collect and segregate waste
  • The company also help open their bank accounts so that we can transfer their daily wages to these bank accounts, enabling them to save some money for emergencies and take loans from banks at lesser interest rates.

Further to all these efforts, the company creates awareness among people on how to reduce waste reaching landfills and help save the environment through various door-to-door and social media campaigns. 

One such campaign is FarakPadtaHai, in which the company tries to help people understand the importance of separating waste at its source and recycling it because it directly affects the environment and the future of coming generations. Our society needs more such waste warriors, and we should support the cause of such organisations from our end for a better and sustainable world. 

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