Indian government and various NGO’s have been playing their bit by taking rigorous initiatives like ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan”, in order to keep the environment clean and healthy. However, it is heart-breaking to see that Indian society is somewhat failing to understand and perform its part.
Keeping the ideology in mind that man is a sensible social being and considering Indians as moralised civilians, the government arranged shoe covers for visitors touring Taj Mahal, so that the dirt of visitors' shoes could be prevented and, thus, the whiteness of the Taj could be well-maintained. Ironically, these shoe covers are littered everywhere or found wafting in the air.
At first, one might see a poised monument of white marble, beautifully embossed with Arabic inscriptions, securing its stature in the list of seven wonders of world. But when looking around the premises, one might lower the eyes and clamp up noticing the place being littered with the piles of plastic water bottles and discarded shoe covers left behind by the people who come down to admire the monument.
Taj looks shabbier with these wandering shoe covers than it would have looked with dirt stains at first. The beauty of the place has deteriorated despite the efforts of keeping rubbish away, bringing disgrace and dishonour to our heritage eventually. Now, the question is who is to be blamed?
A consciousness of basic hygiene, etiquettes and sensibility of our society is yet again questionable whenever I see the dirty walls in our country. Instead of tall standing walls of pride, our walls become the ‘wall of shame’. Walls have layers of paan stains and its corners are used as the local urinal. It is absurd to witness red spitting stains and red letters running in bold saying ‘Fine of Rs. 200 for spitting and littering here’.
Along with the emotional toll, such discoloured walls bring the dilemma of whether to laugh at these ironic sights or get disheartened.
These experiences bring me back to Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
Well, we have been talking about the many failures of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan but a deeper analysis is needed into who is to be blamed for the same.
Every individual needs to understand his responsibility of attaining and maintaining the balance in various aspects of our society whether be it health, ecology or heritage. The government of India has taken its step for the conservation of Taj, cleanliness of surrounding and in turn, the protection of its citizens. Now it’s the responsibility of us, the Indians, to keep the surrounding clean in order to maintain the ecological balance as well as the esteem of our nation, because if one of them is destroyed, the other is affected.
(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed above are the personal views of the author and do not reflect the views of ZMCL)