Swacch Karkala Brigade is a group of citizens from Karkala, district in Udupi, who have volunteered to do their fundamental duty to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, rivers, and wildlife.
Karkala, a small town situated in Udupi of Karnataka is situated on the foothills of Western Ghats and is recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Site. Karkala is home to several historic landmarks, ancient pilgrim centers, rich natural resources, rivers, and forests attracting tourists from all over the world.
Alarmed by the massive influx of trash in public spaces, roads, rivers, mountains, forests, and tourist destinations, the citizens of Karkala pledged to give 100 hours in a year to fight and overcome the problem of public littering.
Swacch Karkala Brigade is inspired by Swacch Bharat Mission by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and enormous selfless work done by Yuva Brigade and Ramakrishna Ashram.
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So far, they have organized more than weekly 71 clean-ups at various prominent public places in Karkala Taluk and have cleaned more than 100 tons of garbage lying in open and handed it over to waste segregating and recycling units spaces so far.
Cost-effective and efficient dustbins from scratch have been built and more than 50 handmade dustbins have been installed in and around Karkala.
A program to beautify public spaces by transforming old and dilapidated walls in public places into Graffiti depicting rich Indian heritage, Tulu Culture, the importance of Swachh Bharat, and environment protection have been initiated.
Swacch Karkala Brigade didn’t deter even during the COVID time, they formed a Corona Taskforce during the National lockdown to aid and assist the Karkala Taluk Administration. They delivered essentials, painted social distancing boxes, set up an emergency helpline, and volunteered to help the administration.
They have launched an interactive program called ‘Swachhata Samwad’ to raise awareness on cleanliness,
Swachh Bharat, waste segregation, waste disposal, recycling among other connected topics to school and college students.
In order to reach the object of achieving a litter-free Taluk, they have started the “Swachha Grama Namma Kanasu” campaign- encouraging teams, volunteer organizations & administrative authorities to come together and conduct weekly clean-ups in litter infested public places.
Udayavani.com spoke to an advocate feigning to the recent act caught on camera, where a duo was caught red-handed dumping waste into the Netravati river.
Their vehicle has been seized and as they were not wearing masks, they will be penalized under Disaster Management Act section 51 (b), as of the latest update.
Speaking to Udayavani.com Bharatesh, an Advocate and member of the brigade said that Municipal Corporation must come up with signboards and impose a fine on people violating the law.
“Popular to our country’s notion of ‘Rules are meant to be broken,’ Municipal Corporation must take strict actions and media must call these people out in order to spread awareness,” he added.