Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Lesson 4: Yours, Litter-ally, Indian!

It happens only in India

I will not throw my cigarette butts and toffee wrappers on the road. If need be, I shall wrap those in a paper to throw in a bin later. Or use the ashtray in my car. That’s my contribution today. Yours?

Sree, writes/contributes from Canada and says, "30 States, 1618 languages, 6400 castes, 6 religions. My India. And here is my application in white paper for the J.Bo, J Bites Indian Shitizenship.

We Are The Litter Soldiers.

An ad campaign on Indian Television few years ago: A taxi driver at a traffic signal, spitting on the road. A woman in a car drives close to the taxi, lowers her window glasses, looks at the taxi driver and says "Cheee" making a grimace. The taxi driver has an embarrassed look. A slogan shows up on screen: “Say Cheeee, Keep Mumbai Clean"

Likewise, it is my dream too to have a litter free India.

We, as a nation, have made several sincere attempts to keep our streets clean. All of it died out in time. We Indians have short memories; let it be an explosion or an eruption, OR a litter free campaign.

When America still cries for a 9/11, we have moved on with every disaster that has hit our land. We are eager to get back to what we call a normal life. If only we just pause and think for a while, the getting back to life can be made better than the same old same old. If only we develop the mentality that having better things in life is not being less humble. If only… We just stop littering on the streets.

An Indian, who spits and pees in one super-shot on our streets, is able to control and quit while in a foreign land where it is punishable. Makes me wonder what we can do to inject some sense of patriotism in our everyday life other than just painting faces in tricolours or spending Rs 5 on a microscopic flag on an August 15th.

Do we need to give out flowers to everyone who peepee in public and hope that such embarassment/ Gandhigiri, will make them quit? He would probably find a flower free space to unzip his pants.

Nothing works in India, and let me say in the same breath that we can make it work in India. And thus my wish to RIP in a litter-free, clean India can be made possible. I often visualize the nightmare of having an unsatisfied death knowing that I shall be taken through a litter-some street for my funeral.

Canada has a Litter King who did the unthinkable by legally changing his name to 'Litter King’, so that no one will forget about his mission to keep the streets of his country litter free. He walks with an ice cream bucket as his crown and cleans trash from the streets. And he hopes one day his campaign catches on. His message to his people,"Protect Your Land. Okay?”

One man just might make a difference in a country like Canada, where almost all the streets are litter free. The Litter King has the task to finish off the already satisfactory job or remind his countrymen about the importance of having a clean land. But in India, we need several minds to unite and start from scratch.

We should protect our land, very much like the brave soldiers who fought in Kargil.We are the Litter Soldiers. But how? Ad campaigns alone seldom work. We have seen that.

Gandhigiri seems to work when aimed at aforeign land and its people, rather than our own.

When the Gujarat disaster happened few years ago in 2001, there was an online campaign started by a website to light virtual lamps for the departed souls. Several thousands were lit by Indians all over the globe. People seem to think better in front of a computer. And right here we have the bloggers’ strength to pretty much scribble down our dreams about a better India. And let me dream, that someday we can make some of it, if not all, a reality.


Thanks Sree!

PS: It takes one, we now have three writing here: two out of those will not litter. Not bad at all. Happy at this small, small start… and hoping for more. We need more. Come one, come all…and even if you want to laugh at us, just pass on the message, okay? :)

Please DO mail your contributions - foxytanya@gmail.com: It could be anything, something you write, a funny picture you have taken, share a recipe by the aunty in your locality....anything that is India.


Crimson Feet said...

good one sree!!

may be we can start clicking photographs of those relishing the pleasure of release on a road side, and post them here!.. (photo clicked from front.. some task there!)

or may be something more feasible than above.. i mean... need to start putting action points..


am tempted to say ..

So dream when the day is through,
Dream, and they might come true,
Things never are as bad as they seem,
So dream, dream, dream


Sree said...

Thanks Crimson feet.

Dreams and reality aint too far, but then it takes to move some butts,including mine :)

Lets see how we will do.

Goodluck to the threesome,and waiting for more.


We should have the courage to dream. Whether it turns out to be a reality is another thing.
I really liked it. Good going.

Sree said...

Hello sir,
Thanks a bunch for visiting us here.Means so much.And the encouraging words, always a delight.