Mansoor, 33 years-old, an ex-waste collector, today employs ten families in a warehouse in India’s IT-town Bangalore, who collect and recycle garbage every day. He very proudly presents his employees with uniforms, puts them en route to the producers of waste, utilizes bicycles for work, is informed about the market prices and knows the best recycling clients. This professionalization was made possible by the IT specialist-Mindtree, who is also located in Bangalore. More than 10,000 people work in the steel and glass towers in Bangalore for Mindtree and a team of 45, have been trying for one and a half years to solve the garbage problem of the city, and simultaneously trying to improve the lives of the garbage collectors of the metropolis.
Almost 4,000 tons of garbage end up at unauthorized dumps of Bangalore’s marginal regions per day. Before Mindtree began to cooperate with non-government organizations, there wasn’t an official supply chain for garbage in Bangalore. Now the application “I Got Garbage” helps to optimize the whole garbage process at 190 newly built waste collection points. Even factories, stores and households inform the waste collectors via the app as to when they can pick up garbage. Because most of them are not educated, the application works mainly with symbols. “The people now listen to us” says Satyam Gambir of Mindtree and even for Nalini Shekar, cofounder of NGO Hasiru Dala “I Got Garbage” means the future, because it raises awareness amongst people and helps to build a clean India.