Bengaluru-based Naveen Mariyan is definitely a man on a mission! And his mission - to re-organise the city trash recycling in a more professional way. On a chance visit to his friend’s apartment complex, Naveen came across a kabadiwala collecting trash and weighing it out. This was when the idea to changing this entire market struck him. Through his initiative, apart from disposing waste properly, he wanted to make the process more mainstream and user friendly and create awareness that, as in the West, recycling can reap rewards for people who do it responsibly.
For this hotel management graduate, the biggest challenge was creating awareness about his venture initially. But now, Naveen and his team are already collecting up to 13,000 tonnes of garbage. Discussing the type of refuse they work with, he lists, “We collect almost everything from newspapers, water bottles and even coconut shells, apart from Thermocol, furniture and clothes.” From start to finish, this entire initiative is completely an online platform. “From scheduling the waste pick up to the segregation and the cash transaction, it’s all done online,” Naveen says, adding that once the waste is sent to manufacturing units to be recycled, his team keeps a track of the results as well.
Naveen has two major reasons why he started this initiative. “One, to ensure no wet or dry waste reached landfills. Two, to provide a better place for the future generation to live in,” Naveen explains, adding that the chaotic system prevalent now is what spurred him to look for an alternative method. After conducting market research for over seven months, his venture went on the floors in December 2016. Speaking about the response that they have received, he says, “Only exposed to the previously disorganised system, people were surprised at the professional way in which we handled everything.” He adds, “A lot of people avoid getting in to this field due to the negative image that it has gained over the years. But this project was started to create awareness that this market is not as bad as it looks.” Naveen and his team, which consists solely of school dropouts that he personally appointed, have other projects underway too. “We are going to start recycling negative scan reports like X-rays. We are tying up with various Bengaluru start-ups for this,” he confides.