Saturday, August 15, 2015

Cleaner India in action !

This summer when we visited India for vacation, we traveled by the regular trains and were pleasantly surprised to see that there has been an overall improvement in the maintenance of railway stations, trains & streets. Railway stations (incl. Chennai Egmore and Virudhunagar, which were our origin/destination points) looked cleaner than they used to be in the past, with dustbins installed every 10 meters. We traveled by 2 tier A/C coach and the bathrooms were quite clean, probably sanitized with air fresheners and remained that way till we got off at our destination (thanks to the coach attendants in duty). There were extra dustbins placed inside the toilets in addition to the one found below the wash basin at the end of the compartments and one more bin placed in the connecting path between coaches. Best of all, the bio-toilets were installed and that means no more dirty tracks / stations !!! The coach that we traveled also was neat with all functional accessories (e.g. fans, reading lights, mobile charger points, water bottle pouches ...). What a welcome change !

On the streets within the city/town, earlier we are used to seeing garbage overflow, passage obstructions due to spill-over, harmful stench to the residents and breeding ground for mosquitoes & flies. In contrast, we noticed dustbins on the side/corner of most of the streets incl. the beach walkways, which looked quite clean, cleared almost daily and sprinkled with disinfectant . In fact, there were display boards with the name and contact details of the person from municipal/Corporation in-charge of collecting garbage and their Managers', including their personal mobile number !

Despite all this effort and initiatives, media/posts continue to complain about the lack of actions from civic bodies/authorities, without appreciating such noticeable changes. Whether it is small or big a positive change needs to at least be acknowledged. As far as we are concerned, Hygiene & Cleanliness tops the priority list in a civic sense, and we are so pleased that actions and benefits have started to kick-in.

We support India's Cleanliness program & hoping to continue with this great mindset change (teaching such civic responsibilities to the next generation, practice waste segregation in our homes, appreciating the work of the local garbage cleaning teams..) on this Independence Day !