Can you guess the location of the picture?
Frankly, it could be any place in India. Filthy road-side habits coupled with piles of garbage littered around has become a trademark of our country. It is sad that India, who invented flush toilets is the same country where most people have no toilets in their house. Mahatma Gandhi once said, “Sanitation is more important than political independence.” Then why, even after 68 years of independence is clean India still a dream? The irony is everyone wants to see a clean India, the people, the government…but everyone expects others to do it. So, when our prime minister, Narendra Modi took it upon himself to pick a broom, and start a campaign for swachh Bharat, he was considered a pioneer. It triggered an enthusiasm among the people.
Banega Swachh India
RB and NDTV partnered to launch a five year ambitious programme, Banega Swachh India to address the sanitation and hygiene needs in India. The campaign aims at promoting awareness about sanitation and hygiene, and also team up with NGO’s to build infra-structure and toilets in India. This is an alarming task considering the nature of the campaign, and the current state of the country.
As a part of this campaign, swachh express was flagged off, which aimed to create awareness among the people by interactive videos, distributing flyer, hand-washing sessions, etc. Swachh India is not just about taking a broom and cleaning up your area, but maintaining good sanitation practices like not littering the streets with garbage,avoiding defecating in the open, and also includes personal hygiene like washing hands. In short, it is a campaign to promote a healthy India along with Swachh India.
When Nihal from Indiblogger called to inform me, that I could join the swachh express during their journey in Maharashtra state, I was jubilant. Thus, I got to experience the live working of the campaign, and record how it affected/influenced the people. Continue reading The way to Swachh India
Nima looked longingly at the school building, the kids rushing inside with their coloured backpacks. Her feet automaticaly moved in the direction of the school gate. She couldn’t decide between going to school, and to her mistress’s house. She wanted to study, to learn to read the books which told countless stories of great men of the world. However, she needed the work, her father was always ill, and mom couldn’t afford to feed their whole family. Her stomach growled, and the decision was made. Cleaning her mistress’s house might be exhaustive; it was a big house. There were many dishes she had to wash too, but there was leftover there, and she didn’t have to worry about food.
All through the washing, Nima dreamt that she was in her school with Lata playing, and talking about how she would be a Doctor when she would grew up. Then, she would treat people like her papa who didn’t have much money. The crash of the plate broke her reverie. She picked up the pieces, and tried to fix it. The glass cut through her little fingers, but she was worried more about how her mistress would react. She shivered at an earlier memory… Continue reading Hungry for education