Abhijit Bangar assumed the role of Executive Officer of Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) with a clear vision in mind: to transform the city's sanitation landscape. Traditionally, sanitation efforts had centered on solid waste management alone, and rightfully so, but Bangar envisioned a comprehensive approach that extended beyond solid waste because that is not the only waste that cities have to deal with.
Under Bangar's leadership, Navi Mumbai achieved the remarkable feat of ranking 3rd in Swachh Survekshan 2020. The transformation was driven by innovative strategies, focusing on beautifying the city, ramping up Information, Education, and Communication (IEC) activities, and fostering robust citizen engagement.
Bangar managed to mobilize citizens to the extent that the IEC activities were enabled by enthusiastic citizen participation and included street plays, performances by Swachh Ambassadors, flash mobs, social media campaigns, and cleanliness drives. Bangar is sure to highlight the important role the community plays when saying “The city of Navi Mumbai has always been at the forefront of cleanliness, and citizens' participation has played a major role in this.” The #NischayKelaNumberPahila campaign ("we have decided to be No.1") further rallied citizens, inspiring active participation.
To bolster engagement, innovative initiatives like Swachh Radio and QR-based Toilet Feedback systems were introduced. Automation technology and apps streamlined operations, reducing fraud and accelerating digital transformation. RFID/GPS-based Garbage Vehicle and Bin Tracking System and Septic Tank Level Sensors enhanced waste management efficiency and safety. Bangar recognizes the synergy between technology and behavioral change in sanitation. While technology modernized waste management, he stressed that behavioral change was the linchpin for sustainable sanitation.
Abhijit Bangar's visionary leadership not only elevated Navi Mumbai's sanitation standards but also fostered citizen engagement, laying the foundation for a resilient and sustainable city. Bangar’s efforts spanned far beyond sanitization and focused on beautification projects in the city. These projects, spanning traffic signals, crossroads, water bodies, bridges, and underpasses, adorned public spaces with art installations and LED traffic lights, elevating aesthetics across all 111 city wards. With Bangar’s relentless efforts, NMMC's initiatives reinforced citizen's trust in the government.