Porishkar Kolkata

PRID Shekhar Mehta releasing baloons at the launch ceremony.
PRID Shekhar Mehta releasing baloons at the launch ceremony.

The Swachh Bharat buzz has caught on and pan India —across villages, cities and States — and corporates and NGOs alike are gearing up to spend their CSR funds to keep their surroundings clean and hygienic. Schools teach children to keep their classrooms and campus clean and throw litter into trash can. Volunteers campaign for clean streets and educate people not to throw waste around and use the dustbin to dump their waste. But wait, where are the dustbins?

“As I was enjoying my morning walk one day, I noticed a gentleman throwing a banana peel on the side of the road. I gathered courage and pointed out to him that it would be great if he could pick it up and throw it in the dustbin. He retorted: ‘Show me a dustbin.’ This triggered the start of this wonderful activity,” said PDG Kamal Seth, District 3291, explaining the ‘Porishkar Kolkata’ campaign.

RC Calcutta Midtown in association with Steel Authority of India (SAIL), and active support of the ­Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), has rolled out this campaign to keep the streets of the metro clean. Launching the cleanliness drive on March 4, the Rotarians distributed 50 garbage bins among hawkers at Camac Street. In this colourful function, students, businessmen, street vendors and Rotarians participated. Around 50 school children designed and displayed placards generating awareness about cleanliness and hygiene. Ten best ones were given gift vouchers.

Children holding the placards designed by them.
Children holding the placards designed by them.

The club plans to install 300 dust bins, sponsored by SAIL, in three streets initially. The project is to be carried out in phases spread across two years, with the steel giant promising 3,000 garbage bins across Kolkata. More programmes targeting various zones and communities are to follow.

“Though much is talked about the Swachh Bharat programme, there is a lack of awareness on an individual basis, especially among communities such as the hawkers.We are educating them on the basics and making sure they also ensure their customers keep their environment clean,” said club President, Bhupesh Kapoor.

PRID Shekhar Mehta, R K Sharma, Executive Director SAIL, State Minister of Correctional Administration H A Safwi and KMC Borough VII Chair Sushmita Bhattacharya participated in this drive. Commending the Rotarians on their unique project Mehta said, “Sustained campaign of education and building awareness on waste disposal will make the Clean India dream come true.”

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