Message: Anita writes from Let's do it! Delhi (Apr 22)

Team of volunteers in New Delhi, planning a city-wide clean-up in the capital of India, on 26th of September 2010, is busy at work. Read team-leader Anita's message and report about the recent developments and future plans below.

It has been a month since the Bhikaji Cama Event and we have been extremely busy. Our focus has been on one Circle of NDMC (Circle 12) which is Netaji Nagar, North Moti Bagh, Basrurkar Market, Begum Zaidi Market, Pallika Bhavan and RK Puram Sector 13 and one Ward of MCD (Ward 200) which is Okhla Industrial Area Phase 1 and 2 and Harkesh Nagar, Rajeev Camp, Sanjay Colony and Shyam Nagar.

We had immense learnings from Bhikaji Cama Place. We thank you for your feedback on what we did right, and what we should have done differently. A lot of you are curious to know how things are at Bhikaji Cama Place after 20th March.  The complex is a whole lot cleaner than before but not the way we would like to see it. What is great is that the occupants of the complex have been energized and have come together to ensure that things do not go back to what they were before. They have now started asking questions of the DDA, demanding certain things etc and the dialogue is on. The Bhikaji Cama Report that we created, which is available for all of you on our site is now on the desk of the LG of Delhi and we shall be meeting him soon to take it further. DDA has not yet delivered on some of the things it promised to do but we are monitoring that. We hope that in a month or two, things will be where we would like to see them. Ultimately, the office complex and its level of cleanliness is in the hands of the two most important stakeholders...the occupants and the DDA.

With regard to our next focus area ie. Circle 12 of NDMC and Ward 200 of MCD, we are interacting with both civic authorities as well as the occupants through the industries association, market association, and the RWAs and reaching out to the slum areas through the NGOs already operating there.  With the civic authorities, we are insisting on issuing of service standards for the clearing of bins, and for the safai karamcharis so that the occupants can monitor them on a regular basis. We have also identified areas for pre-clean up. Initially the response of MCD was slow but we are now making good progress. For Circle 12 we are also interacting with other authorities such as CPWD for what they have to do with regards to removal of their malba etc. The residents of Circle 12 have shown interest in segregating household waste and composting the same and we are working with CPWD/Horticulture Department of NDMC and an NGO with experience in this area to make this happen. We had initially hoped that our NDMC area cleanup could be on May 8th but we may need to move that a bit depending upon the progress on the sustainability plan and pre-cleanup. We have not announced the clean up date for Ward 200 as it depends entirely upon MCD, the pre-clean ups and the occupants. The target month remains May and we will keep you posted on this.  

While all this is going on, we are organising a school event where school children will take the no-litter pledge and pick up litter in a chosen area in or around their school for an hour on 7th May. The response from schools has been very good so far and we are receiving signups from schools until 30th April.

The most wonderful thing that has happened is that a lot of volunteers who were there on March 20th have been in touch with us and have expressed a keenness to organize events in their own areas. The corporate partners who were with us have all expressed a desire to be with us throughout the duration of the initiative and are also organizing corporate clean up events. A clean up of the New Friends Colony complex is scheduled for 24th April, 2010. Other upcoming clean ups are at either Qutub Minar or Deer Park on May 8th, the Red Fort and the Vasant Kunj area.  As soon as these are firmed up, we will announce them on our website.

It is very exciting so see so many Delhiites wanting to see the city cleaner and also work towards it. In case you wish to organize a resident or a corporate clean up event, whether under the Let’s Do it Delhi banner or otherwise, please send a mail to anita@letsdoitdelhi.org and we will help in whatever way we can with our learnings, documents, civic authorities assistance etc.

Keep spreading the spirit of Let’s do it! Delhi like one of our members, Nandini Adya,  who organized a clean up of the mess left outside a temple in Mukteshwar after a major puja. She gathered 16 school children who along with her cleaned all the mess in less than an hour and also took the no litter pledge! That’s how easy it is!

Be inspired and inspire others. 

Anita