When will our people learn simple values and civic sense? We talk of plastic ban, we talk of fining those who dirty the city but nothing have moved beyond laws on paper and rhetoric. Plastic bags are available in almost all shops. One can see the city flooding with litter at every corner. The smart ones who cannot wait for the garbage truck throw litter out of the car windows and speed away. Building walls smeared with doma stain adds an uneasy colour to our already colourful architectural design. Obscene creativity has graffiti and gang-texts decorate our walls.
But what I hate the most is when people throw leftover food from the verandah of their houses in the open place oblivious of who is living below their houses. Believe me, I had to wash my laundry thrice last Saturday after some unruly and uncivilized persons residing in the same building had thrown their leftover food over the clothes I hung dry in the open space behind my house.
Sometimes I would find my car covered with the leftover food wasting my precious time in cleaning them. I reside in a four-storied building with four flats in each floor and four attics making it to a total of twenty single or family occupants. And I happen to living in the first floor which from behind would seem like a ground floor. Now how do I ascertain who is throwing what from their verandah?
How do we create awareness on proper handling and disposal of waste? Whose responsibility is it to sensitize the public on such issues? Though many may say it is the responsibility of the City Corporation to come out with various awareness programs, I feel that it should be the collective responsibilities of every citizen to educate each other on such matters which may seem like a trivial issue but which otherwise has a huge impact on the lives of people. These very simple things in life matter a lot in educating our people, in making our citizens responsible and productive. Collective effort is a must here.
Schools are the best places to educate on simple values in life. Teachers can talk to students in their day to day lessons on waste disposal, switching off lights, putting off the tap, picking up litter on the way, keeping their surroundings clean, respecting neighbors and so on. Teachers can inform the students to take the messages back to their families at home. I say this specifically based on the fact that school-going children can act as messengers to their families.
Charity begins at home and so does everything. We cannot expect our children to talk about big issues in their lives and country when values as simple as taking care of one’s waste are ignored.