Tuesday, March 28

Locals honour Fab Four who keep neighbourhood clean in Kolkata

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The 21-day lockdown notwithstanding, four conservancy workers in Ganguly Bagan have not missed out on a single day’s work. Attending to nearly 5,000 households every day, they have been collecting waste from every home, regardless of the risk it might pose. Overwhelmed by their dedication, residents of the area were felicitated the four and gave them a standing ovation for their service during the lockdown, thanks to which they can boast of a “clean” neighbourhood.
On Thursday, as the four—Mahendra Rabidas, Santu Das, Bahadur and Upendra—reached the locality, residents of the area came out with garlands to felicitate them. Elderly women also blessed them with “dhaan-durba” and prayed for their long lives. Later, the residents handed out masks, sanitisers, money and food packets to them. “Doctors are fighting it out at the frontline. But these men are no less than. Putting their lives at risk, they ensure our homes do not stink. We had to honour them for their selfless service,” said Parimal Dey, a resident of 4 No Vidyasagar Colony.

For the past fortnight, Rabidas (38) has been leaving home early in the morning and cycling for 40 minutes to reach Ganguly Bagan. He parks his cycle near a house and sets off with his garbage cart. Not for a day have residents of Number 4, Vidyasagar Colony at Ganguly Bagan missed his morning whistle, calling out to people to dump the waste in the cart. “I could not say no to the call of duty. People are now staying home and the volume of waste has gone up. But, I am trying to ensure that each house is served every day,” said Rabidas. Like him, Santu, Bahadur and Upendra also cycle to work every day. “One of them comes from Jodhpur Park and another from Bansdroni. We have to leave home early to reach on time,” Rabidas said.

“We realized how important their contribution is to society and felt they should get their due. People who don’t even know these four by their names came out on the street and applauded for them,” said Naresh Mandal, another resident. “There cannot be a better way to show our respect to people who work to keep the city clean. We plan to do something similar in our neighbourhood too,” said Kasba resident Dilip Singh, who was at the locality on some work.


Source: Times of India

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