Hurting the Informal Sector


While often unseen or overlooked, 1 out of every 100 Delhi residents earns a livelihood as a wastepicker. As a group, these informal garbage men and women collect over half of the city’s waste.

The City Fix shares a video that highlights the plight of the wasterpickers and their almost daily harassment by the police. The city government recently passed laws that favored private trash collection companies over this informal sector of laborers.

One thought on “Hurting the Informal Sector

  1. It’s an interesting question, Pratik and I suspect the answers are not as simple as folks at city fix would like us to believe for that matter the government. While the rights of wastepickers are important, they have to be balanced against the right of the society to have a functional waste disposal system. How is the recycling industry being run? What are the environmental costs? Most Delhi hospitals have no proper system of disposal of bio-hazardous materials; there have been cases of syringes being recycled after being picked up by wastepickers.

    And then of course the old question: Is 1 among 100 a large number? Depends entirely I guess on how you frame it. It can be ”as many as 1 in 100” ”or as few as 1 in hundred. ”

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