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It's Cool to be Clean!

Its Cool to be Clean!

Sentinel Digital Desk

It's cool to be clean! Yes this is what four friends of Guwahati follow. This group of few friends often make failed attempts to hangout on Sundays. The frustration of not being able to hang out together motivated them to pursue a more noble cause – clean up five (5) different tourist spots of the city on five (5) different Sundays!

Rupak Medhi, who first devised the idea of taking up this initiative, was busy with his preparations for the civil service. During his preparation, he realised how vulnerable the world has become due to plastic pollution. So, in order to make a small difference with whatever he could, he thought of doing something about it at his personal capacity, once his exam got over. Right after finishing his final paper, he called up a few friends – Mrinal, Soumitra, Sabyasachi, Abhinas and Baikuntha – to discuss this idea further. So after the discussion, the idea turned into a full proof plan to clean 5 tourist spots on 5 Sundays!

As Rupak says, "After the first phase of planning got over, in order to execute it with proper guidance, we called up Rupak's cousin, Ratna Baruah, who already has a lot of experience regarding social activities and finally after some telephonic discussions, the 1st spot was decided at Basistha Ashram. Once the spot was decided, a few more friends joined us for the same purpose (Naba, Austam, Deepjyoti)."

The reason behind selecting the spot was simple. In Rupak's words, "The plot was selected primarily because of three reasons. Firstly, it's an important tourist spot in Guwahati. Secondly, it has a water body surrounding it which has a lot of plastic waste, and thirdly, the temple campus was also in need of some cleaning."

So, as planned, the Basistha Ashram was cleaned on 8th September by nine members of the team. Even though it was not possible to clean all the waste on a single day, yet they did what they could, and that day, it gave this group of friends a lot of happiness and confidence.

Rupak continues, "Once the first event got over, we shared some pictures on social media. We were encouraged by many people and a few more friends joined us for the same purpose. The next spot that we selected was Deepor Beel. The site wa selected at the suggestion of Promod Kalita, who is a social activist working in eco-tourism of the area. So on 15th September, we gathered at around 11a.m and worked there till 3:45 p.m. and collected a huge amount of plastic waste and disposed it at the GMC dustbins at Gorchuk Chariali. On that Sunday, a few more helping hand joined us (Plabita, Rehna, Dipankar, Kamal)."

Rupak further says that they have now named their group as "Guwahati 4 a Change". "We have also created a page on Facebook to share our work and spread awareness. We know it's impossible to clean the whole city in 5 days but even if we can inspire a few people to do such activities or programs at the grass root level, and can inspire 10 more people, it would be a huge success for us," he says, adding, "If anybody wants to join or help, they can mail us at guwahatiachange@gmail.com".

Aiyushman Dutta

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