Bhopal: Bhopal being declared the second cleanest city in the country for the second time in a row has evoked mixed reactions from the residents. While some find it surprising, others say that only select areas of the city are clean.

They say that sanitation cannot be a formality, a one-time affair. It must be a continuous process and unless the people are made aware, no cleanliness campaign can succeed. The government and the authorities cannot do anything without people’s support.

Anshu Gupta, social activist

I don’t know how Bhopal emerged at the second spot in the swachhta survey. It would be a surprise if it even figures amongst the top 100 ones. In any case, I find that cleanliness in the city is limited to certain areas like the VIP Road, Char Imli, 74 Bungalows etc. The places where most of the people reside lack sanitation. There are no dustbins, no drainage system, nothing. The condition of the old city is pathetic. Sanitation is a continuous process. Just see the eradication of open defecation drive. When there is no water, no latrines, where will the people relieve themselves?

Shivani Ghosh, director, Parvarish – The Museum School

Unless people are sensitised, cleanliness campaign cannot succeed. We should try to inculcate good habits among the children. They are quick learners. They should be told that just like their homes, they should also keep their surroundings, their schools and their city clean. As for the Western countries, the people play a major role in keeping their cities clean. They do not litter. It is quite encouraging that Bhopal secured number two spot. We all have to come together to achieve number one spot

Sonia Soni, housewife

Our garbage disposal system needs to be changed. It needs a complete overhaul. The garbage collection system of the BMC is far from perfect. They do not empty the garbage bins regularly and the result is that the bins start overflowing and garbage is all over the place. The BMC employees work like typical government servants. Cleanliness should be a part our habit. It should not be like we wear helmets or seat belts just to avoid fines. Keeping our surrounding clean should become part of our nature. The motivation must come from within.

Anshika Malaviya, student

I think the survey teams visited only such areas in the city which are already clean such as popular spots, major roads and landmark buildings. The cleanliness survey has become a formality. They come, they are taken to places which are already spic and span and they declare that the city as clean. What is this? Can cleanliness be a one-time affair? They should ensure that every area, every locality of the city is clean, shouldn’t they? If people find filth all around them then what is the point in getting a top spot in a survey?

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