On every Saturday in December 2023 and January 2024, one ward among the seven zones will be selected and thoroughly cleaned
Before each drive begins, the area’s roads and lanes will be cleaned
A cleanliness drive has been undertaken by the BMC across Tardeo, Malabar Hill and Dharavi with a focus on making roads and footpaths dust-free. Alongside the disposal of abandoned vehicles, action will be taken against unlicensed billboards. The cleaning of public toilets, maintenance of parks and playgrounds, hawker-free zones, and debris-free areas are also on the list.
This drive is part of a proposed cleanliness campaign in all 24 wards of the city, under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. What is heartening is that a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) has been laid down for the initiative. On every Saturday in December 2023 and January 2024, one ward among the seven zones will be selected and thoroughly cleaned.
The Encroachment Removal Department will take action against unauthorised hoardings and posters; the traffic police will provide support in the removal of abandoned vehicles from the area. While this seems good, we must now see that the implementation is smooth. We need more dustbins in public spaces. If there is any filching, that has to be addressed through sharp CCTV coverage, with police follow-up.
More announcements in public spaces about the drive, with a focus on what and how the citizenry can be part of this, will be helpful too. It will instil a sense of participation in people. While one ward each in the seven zones will be cleaned, maintenance of the cleaned earlier is vital on other days, so that it does not go back to status quo once that initiative is over.
Picking up after oneself, scoop the dog poop, avoid spitting and teaching children how it is ultimately they who benefit by cleanliness, can all act as useful adjuncts. Let’s enter 2024, pressing the gas pedal on cleanliness.