KARACHI: The Blue Jacket Movement (BJM), a drive against open littering on the city’s roads by citizens, a problem that has added to the trash collection problems of government authorities, officially commenced at Boat Basin in Clifton on Monday.
Speaking to Dawn, Deputy Commissioner South Saeed Salahuddin, the main force behind the movement in district South, said that their first day comprised “counselling” activity. “We visited some 50 restaurants and eateries, including shops at Boat Basin, and met each of their owners on Monday to talk to them about the menace of open littering. We also had some 60 volunteers in blue jackets with us to extend any help if needed by the restaurant owners,” he said.
“We were glad to receive an assurance of their commitment to become Blue Jacket-compliant. They said they will also talk to their customers and explain to them that they were in a BJM-compliant zone where no open littering would be tolerated and that they too should act as responsible people and dispose of trash in the bin,” he said.
“I have also been assured by them that they will be making sure to install individual waste bins for their own use at their restaurants from Tuesday. We have already got approval for placing some 3,500 new dustbins at appropriate locations to start with,” the DC added.
He also said that their talk with the owners of eateries were so successful on the first day that they had also promised to remove the tables, chairs and takhts from beyond the kerb stones. “Some of them started doing it then and there,” he said.
“We were expecting arguments but it was good to find them appreciative of the BJM initiative. Hopefully, it will start a ripple effect,” he concluded.
Earlier, the movement was announced amid much fanfare at Teen Talwar in Clifton on Independence Day with an aim to change the mindset of the people while teaching about civic sense.
Published in Dawn, August 20th, 2019