On the morning of October 2, Gandhi Jayanti, many of us were preparing for a lazy last day of the long weekend. But some Bengalureans were gearing up to get their hands dirty.
In a massive cleanup drive organised by a number of non-governmental bodies, hundreds of volunteers and members of organisations like Namma Bengaluru Foundation (NBF), BPAC (Bengaluru Political Action Committee), Citizens Action Forum, along with some BBMP officials, cleaned up various black spots and painted them.
Sridhar Pabbisetty, CEO of NBF, told TNM that they organised the clean up in 52 locations in 72 wards. “We also organised lake cleanups at seven lakes including Kaggadaspura lake, Horamavu lake, Halagevadera Halli lake. Volunteers and school children along with BBMP officials also spread awareness about segregating wet and dry waste,” he said.
He added that over 15,000 volunteers turned up at different places to take part in the drive.
Raghu, a program coordinator with BPAC told TNM that they had organised the cleanup drive at 20 places in Bengaluru including Koramnagala, Vijaynagar, KR Puram, Shivajinagar and Jayamahal.
Supriya, a member of BPAC who led the cleanup at Suddagunte Palya, brought together a handful of volunteers to clean up the SG Palya government school footpath. While she did not have the backing of a larger number, the volunteers’ efforts received praise from many onlookers.
“People tend to just dump their trash here, even though we tell them to keep it outside their homes. I’m very happy that these people are taking the initiative to clean it up,” said an elderly passerby and resident in the area.
Supriya says they hope to cover more black spots in 20 other areas in the city this month.
City-based collectives like United Bengaluru also came together for 'Swachh Bengaluru'.
A number of public figures including MP Rajiv Chandrasekhar and Bengaluru Youth Congress President Sowmya Reddy, also lent their support to this ‘Swachh Bengaluru’ drive and participated in the cleanup.