Dera Sacha Sauda followers to wield brooms to clean up city
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This year, improving sanitation in the city figures high on the agenda of the civic body. Therefore, Mayor Subhash Chawla held a meeting with Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh at Sirsa on Sunday.
"The dera head has given an in-principle approval for this, though a date would be finalised after working out the modalities. More than one lakh dera followers are expected to come to the city and clean it up. We have been asked to work out the requirement and inform the dera," Chawla says.
The dera has undertaken similar initiatives at other places, including Pushkar, Ajmer, Hisar, Sirsa and Orissa. A cleanliness drive was also initiated at Haridwar along the Ganga river. At all these places the devotees in large numbers descended at one place and then removed garbage from the entire area and cleaned up the place.
The idea was mooted a couple of months back, but could not materialise. After a meeting of the Mayor with the dera chief, the proposal has been revived and the date is likely to be fixed this week.
The officials of the Municipal Corporation have been asked to videotape the garbage, construction waste and polythene lying in different sectors. This would give an idea of the extent of filth that needs to be cleared.
Amongst the modalities being worked out is that chaos should not be created in the city when a large number of dera followers come here. During talks between the Mayor and the dera head, it was said that the followers would be from the city and the adjoining areas. Parking of vehicles would be made on the outskirts in order to avoid any rush.
Another proposal being mooted is to involve NGOs in the sanitation campaign. The Municipal Corporation would pay the NGOs for adopting different sectors. The parks and greenbelts of these sectors could be kept clean by them.
Chawla says, "A major problem that we face is the shortage of manpower. For this, we are trying to seek involvement of associations and NGOs. I have talked to some organisations who have shown interest in this. They would be required to create awareness among the area residents about not littering and maintaining cleanliness."