I belong to Indore, so keep visiting the city once a month, at least. Every time I go home, I am pleasantly surprised to find something new about cleanliness. There has been a tremendous improvement in cleanliness in Indore. It’s almost like the entire municipal corporation was working with immense focus and dedication towards achieving a rather tough goal. But the results speak for themselves.
Let me show you some initiatives taken by the Indore Municipal Corporation.
1. Door-to-door garbage collection vans
Every day domestic garbage is a big source of all the litter around. Earlier, dustbins were kept at designated places (not easily reachable). Hence, many households used to throw the garbage on roadsides or gardens. The job of cleaning the dustbins and litter was entrusted to the sweepers with little checks on them.
Some months back, new garbage collection vans were introduced. They roamed around the residential colonies every morning at designated times and people were expected to throw their garbage directly in the van when it passes through their house. This resulted in a good control over a large source of garbage generation.
2. Swatch Bharat Songs
The garbage collection vans were used for another purpose – as they passed through your homes, you would hear a melodious song about Swatch Bharat and why it’s important to maintain cleanliness. Indore Municipal Corporation even called the famous singer Shaan to record a song for this.
Listen to it here –
The lyrics go like this –
Gali gali aur mohalla karte karte ho halla
Swachchhata ke doot banke ham chale ghar ghar mohalla
Indore ko Swachchh banana hai
Ab hamne ye thhaana hai
Hamne jo maana hai ab use nibhaana hai
Indore ko ab bharat mei no. 1 banana hai
As messengers of cleanliness, we walk the streets to every home and sing songs about cleanliness. We believed in cleanliness, it’s now time to adopt and implement it, and make our city the cleanest in India.
3. Massive awareness drive for cleanliness
In doesn’t end with the songs. The cleanliness efforts are taken beyond that.
Starting with paintings and murals on walls.
4. Toilets and “dabba gangs” – to counter open defecation
To stop the problem of open defecation, the civic body started a campaign using school children (the “dabba gang”) who would start beating metal boxes whenever they see anyone defecating in the open.
This campaign was called the “roko and toko” campaign (“stop” and “object”).
The defecation issue was also tackled by installing toilets in various places. They constructed around 12000 open toilets, about 200 urinals, and community toilets, along with 400 modular toilets.
5. Vegetable waste disposal to organic manure
Compost pits were built near one of the largest vegetable markets in the city to collect and use the vegetable waste generated in tons from there.
Every day several kilos of vegetables and fruits are wasted in the vegetable market. The IMC has to bear the additional cost of transporting this waste to the trenching ground. But with the coming up of compost pits, leftover vegetables can be efficiently converted into manure, said an official
6. Dustbins – tons and tons of them
I was surprised to find many dustbins all across the city. In all the major roads, you simply had to walk about 10–20 steps to find a convenient litter disposal means.
“They don’t have enough dustbins” was a very famous excuse (and often a valid reason) for many people to spread around garbage. Well, it’s not the case anymore – to a large extent. There are dustbins even on roads that are even under construction as of now.
I also saw dustbins with color coding – for wet garbage and for plastic separately. This is an effective way to separate out the bio-degradable garbage from the rest.
About Author: Palkesh Asawa