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March 01, 2019

Swach is a term used for cleanliness. This indeed is an urgent necessity for the citizens of Bharath. Surroundings of our houses, the roads we walk on, the gardens that we frequent, the grounds that we play and the shops we buy from, all of them need to have an ambience of cleanliness. Firstly, the sight of clean surroundings uplifts our own energy content. The human eye that see these neatness translates the message into a conformity. The sudden urge to remain in accordance with the situation around us takes shape in our own behavior. Hence at the Airports, which have been constructed at high premium costs and comparable to any international architecture, the behavior of the people seem to be different. You don’t see garbage thrown on the ground, spitting at the corners of the walls, defacing the very path we walk on, being careless with the leftovers, packaging and

the usage of the urinals and toilet rest rooms. Though there may be marshalls around to maintain the place and the neatness, there is an innate participation of every citizen using the facility. There is a certain pride and an elevation of their self-esteem that they belong to the same system of things that have kept the place clean. Rather than be apologetic and shrinking at the very sight of dirty surroundings, the person has a head-up feeling being in the midst of such cleanliness.


There was a man who visited Singapore and lived there for several months. The day he flew into Mumbai airport and after he passed through Immigration and Customs, he became familiar with the surroundings at the then Mumbai airport. The unpainted walls, the irregular tiles, the spitting on the walls, shreds of paper strewn on the ground and a general sense of untidiness. He begins to get back at the old habit of being careless with our own litter. Of course there were Marshalls around. He carelessly discards a piece of paper on to the ground. The Marshall came along and fined him Rs.10/- for his careless act. The man glares at the Marshall and throws more paper around and hands the Marshall with a hundred rupee note and says that is his fine for 10 more offences. The psyche of the person changes as  per the surroundings  he is in. There is a desire to be in conformity and as a law abiding citizen at a place where the value for being neat and clean among the people are indeed high. At Rome do as what Romans do – is an oft repeated saying. 


The initiative of the Govt seems to be taking shape. Voicelessly, we see that the roads and streets are looking cleaner these days. It appears that the govt bodies of every area have been given a manual to follow and are subject to inspection. Part by part, the road under their jurisdiction are given a face lift. The walls of certain buildings especially, NGOs are painted and kept neat. The footpaths are being attended to, and the markings on the road are being redone. The municipal authorities seem to find the money for such a massive cleanup. The taxes that are paid by the citizens seem to be finding its rightful expense. There is satisfaction among the tax payer that his tax contribution to the Govt is well utilized. The funds are being allocated to improve the standard of living of the people. We see that the Municipal sweepers are at work at the appointed time and are more judiciously doing their work. The ambience is being created. We all need to participate.




SRIRAM ATHRI – 0 98200 81661

Together lets make a difference to one another.