As union minister Alphons Kannanthanam reached India Gate on last Sunday, 17th September, he was all geared up to start the fortnight-long “Swachhata Hi Seva” campaign, arranged as part of PM Narendra Modi’s birthday celebration. There was no lack of enthusiasm for the event as volunteers, students and BJP workers thronged the area. But there was one problem, the India Gate area was “too clean” and there was literally no garbage to collect for the union minister. As his symbolic cleaning of the garbage at India Gate was to kick off the campaign, something had to be done.
Party volunteers came up with a solution and arranged for garbage for Alphons Kannanthanam to clean. The garbage thus arranged had pan masala packets, ice cream cups, dry leaves and empty water bottles in it. Union minister picked the garbage up with his hands thus kicking off the “Swachhata Hi Seva” campaign. But this action may raise questions about the cleanliness of the motive. Is there a lack of unclean places in India? Or Delhi for that matter? What good does it serve to intentionally litter in an area that is already clean to kick off such a campaign?