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Cleanliness at market place - Why are we so indifferent?

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Public Health

Cleanliness - That seems like an alien word outside our houses. Anything outisde of the four walls of our homes, seems no man's land and no body is responsible for anything.

I am sure you must have paid visits to K R Market, Russel Market, Johnson Market and if little lucky to visit Old and new Thurugpet, APMC yard at Yeshwantpur. There is one thing common in all the places. All are famous for unclean pvements, garbage heaps, rotten veggies and fruits scaterred around. You will also be surprised to see that each of these markets have a BBMP ward office located right there. But still cleanliness and upkeep of markets seems not BBMP or somebody's responsible.

I am not making up these lines. Read the news item from Deccan Herald on Mysore's APMC yard.

 The APMC yard, which makes for an important stopover of the fruits and vegetables consumed by the citizens, needs to understand the concept of hygiene and cleanliness better  dh photos

Source - Deccan Herald

"...Wash the vegetables thoroughly, says the cooking rule book. But, what it does not say is how ‘rigorous’ the wash has to be and what kind of detergent you must use to rid the vegetable or the fruit off all the dirt and pesticides it may have imbibed while growing into a plum object.

In that case, will mere ‘washing well in flowing water’ do?

The APMC yard, or the Agricultural Produce and Marketing Committee yard in the city, needs immediate attention as far as hygiene is concerned. Nearly 25,000 - 30,000 tonnes of vegetables and fruits enter and leave this area from various taluks in the district. It is time the officials took note of the dire need for hygiene..."

No solutions?????????


Naveen's picture

The "We" includes the poor

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As long as we continue to have massive numbers of poor /BPL sections for whom sanitation, hygiene & cleanliness are secondary to survival itself, this will continue since others (ie. the better off) will also add to the grime & filth, whilst continuing to blame the "authorities" for the dirty state of our markets & neighbourhoods.

Thus, poverty erradication is primary for all ills plauging the country - disease, hygiene, cleanliness, illiteracy, etc.

Bheema.Upadhyaya's picture

 Cleanliness needs         

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 Cleanliness ( that needs)




Poverty Erradication (that needs)




Industrialization (that needs)                              and  results in

         |                                                                       |

         |                                                                      V

        V                                 Loss of proud Indian Culture and Lifestyle

Natural resource destruction, results in




   Global Warming & Natural disaster


 Are we ready of above? Also are we ready to control population? How are we are trying in ground 0? How many kids do you and me have for whatever reason we give to have kids? 

If all 100 crore people start working towards Industrialization, does India enough land and resources to work?

Let us try to get answers, too complex subjects? But you see, all are related, hard truth. And finally, how much work we want to do for the nation, other than for our personal/family needs?



" My mantra to public bodies=> Enable->Educate->Enforce. Where does  DDC  fit?"
Naveen's picture

Erradicating poverty

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Industrialization is but one efficient way to erradicate poverty - it is not the only way. Mechanized & more efficient farming & services are other examples. Thankfully, we have made a lot of progress in the services sector.

Also, industrialization does not necessarily mean natural resource destruction or global warming & natural disaster. Industries can be made far less destructive with available technologies, but this process is extremely slow in India due to high initial costs & a general reluctance to change over to modern cleaner practices - today's TOI has Anklesaria Aiyar also arguing against solar power.

Natural resources can become national wealth & help in poverty erradication if we find ways to tap such wealth without harming the environment, but we trudge along with no one to guide or show us the way to get this to work.

kbsyed61's picture

This is not due to poverty!

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Naveen, Bheema,

This is certainly not about poverty or richness. This is about our outlook and sensitivities. If this was the problem due to poverty and illiteracy, pls visit one of Indian Independence/Republic day melas that are organized every year in USA. At the end of the day just look for yourself every where.

Trash littered all over the place and a requires a special cleaning crew to clean the mess. Plates, cups left on chairs in the main pavilion areas. Are the visitors illiterate? Poor? I am sorry these are well educated, earn more than an average American earns? It is not that the organizers didn't provide Trash cans and Recycling cans. It is just we have not learn't to dispose of trash in right place. That is the problem.

Coming back to Garbage in market places in Bengaluru, Mysore or any other cities, the problem is of our sensitivities. Garbage disposal is certainly not one of the areas covered in planning and operation in residential localities or commercial areas. Certainly this issue can be tackled, provided the problem is analyzed end to end - from start to finish, from farmlands to retail marketing, from warehouse facilities to garbage disposal system in the wholesale markets.

Fruits and veggies are perishable and needs required handling. The solution to a safe, clean and hygiene market place needs:

  1. Well maintained storm water systems
  2. Well maintained roads with no Potholes
  3. Ample space for unloading and loading of goods
  4. Well maintained sanitary system
  5. Well Maintained Public Restrooms
  6. Garbage collection and Disposable system with strict enforcement of health and hygiene environment

I agree with high illiteracy due to object poverty, it is hard to bring awareness on cleanliness and health. Certainly adopting mechanization and industrialization of some of the process in the supply chain can definitely help. Like packing perishable items in boxes, use of stocking boxes in palettes, easy transfer equipments, scientific garbage disposal system would certainly help.

As I said it needs holistic view and approach to set right the wrongs that we are perpetuating all these years.

E.R. Ramachandran's picture

Looting Tax-payers' money and wrong priority!

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The Graveyard of heaps of garbage in APMC yard is  sickening and so it is in 2/3 of Mysore and God knows how it is declared the second cleanest city in India!

It is not difficult for the MCC/ corporation/ BBMP decide to do something about that. What are they doing in Mysore? Let's see.

They are spending 18.93 crores  to beautify a 4.8 km road called 'Rajmarg' for USE ONCE  a year for Dasara's Jamboo Savari. This is an existing Road which they are going to beautify with sculptureed stone elephants, antique street lights and what have you. The surrounding areas along the route is unhygenic, has garbage , and you can't walk along the stinking stretch.

Something similar to CWG Games goes on in Mysore  year after year without any accountability, each party looting taxpayers' money thro' sub-committees appointed to look after the Games.

Bheema.Upadhyaya's picture

 @syed, You are right. I

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You are right. I appreciate your thought process over it. All of thoughts are complimentary, and hit the cause from some or other angles. Again, here too theoritical/philosophical/emotional approach is not going to help, though I expressed my feelings about contribution from poverty to cleanliness issue. We must start with objective approach which you started already, good to read your post.

Well, let us see process of how a veggie market(say madivala) where street vendors do micro-business to say pretty big business works currently. Note: I am not against your points, I am supporting the approach, trying to go in little deeper, taking diversion from poverty erradication approach as it seems more fundamental and philosophical.

In madiwala market example, let me put the process flow and my observations. We can extend to any other markets.

1) At around 4-5.30AM, trucks from Tamil Nadu side arrive to unload veggies. 

  • Mostly truck people are middlemen, not the farmers. If they were farmers, they would happy to collect back the garbage from previous day, as they use it as compost again, or feed their dairy animals. That does not happen.
  • As you mentioned there is no unloading or receiving bay. To be frank, that is "!@%$$%#"(unknown , unimaginable word) for madiwala market at present. In stead of providing such facilities, we have recently converted half of market into road. So poor vendors either vanished or squeezing into remaining area.
  • So this middlemen (who may not bother, as it is neither their city nor their state- no offense meant) just do their business by 6AM and vacate the place. I am sure even they suffer to finish their natural need of early morning hours, and contribute towards uncleanliness, as there is are not enough restrooms. I see at least 10 -20 trucks at any given time. So if you ask me, at least 20 rest rooms needed, imagine how much space it will need. Currenly there are 4 , I think.

2) At 6am, all street vending carts will arrive at least 200 hundred I can imagine at peak. If all of them are put into order half of madiwala market road strech needed. Of course we need road for early morning buses and morning shift vehicles.

 Most of people who come at early morning business the people who want "fresh" and at "wholesale" prices and more quantity. So they come with 4 wheelers or minitrucks (like Hotel people). So I can imagine at 300 vehicle, we need parking space for all of them...

I will continue this post tomorrow, as these lot more too add..




" My mantra to public bodies=> Enable->Educate->Enforce. Where does  DDC  fit?"
kbsyed61's picture

Can we do something?

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The reason i started this discussion thread was to get some feedback on how we all feel about this important subject. I view the garbage and filth in market place is the by-product of commercial activity that is necessary and is going to continue. The filth, garbage, in-different attitude of civic agencies, traders, public and the ordinary workers who works there are known to all fo us.

The question on PRAJA is what is that we can do? We are a community of members who come from different professional and social backgrounds. We love talking, discussing and arguing to make a point. One step ahead is at times we step out of our homes/offices to visit places, survey and report the on ground realities. Did such trips helped in any way? Yes. This has helped. Examaple is Praja's trip to KR Puram junction, which did see the improvments. Whether the improvments is permanent or not is to be ascertained. Trip to Hosur on train has led to Namma Railu Campaign.

Similarly I am trying to see if there is any possibility for a Praja trip to visit one of the markets and witness all the fun that takes place there.

What do we do there?

Survey the vicinity, talk to the people there, get to know there problems/concerns/complaints, listen to their wish list, take pictures and write a story about this.

What Next?

Make a case/report to highlight the issues, suggest solutions and possible follow up actions. If things and situation allows can plan meeting the civic agencies to present the case requesting action on some low hanging fruits.

Would you be interested in taking the lead on this? Drop me a PM.

Bheema.Upadhyaya's picture

 We are in same page kbsyed.

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 We are in same page kbsyed. Hence I was trying document the process at Madiwala Market. But shortage of time! I paused, at bit. Willtry to finish the current observation first, then will goto next step. On the positive note, Madiwala Market has improved a lot as such...

" My mantra to public bodies=> Enable->Educate->Enforce. Where does  DDC  fit?"
kbsyed61's picture

Would be good if we could produce a report!

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I would look forward to your observation report. I hope that would give rise to producing a Call to Action Report on Vegetable and Fruit Markets in Bangalore City and elsewhere. On the same lines as the Call to Action Report for NAMMA Railu.

I am game for the Call to action report. Send me your email address via PM. I will get in touch with you.


Abhinit's picture

Keep India Clean campaign

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We, Team Ideators  have developed a social campaign named Keep India Clean campaign which aims to generate awareness and desire for action towards keeping our country/city clean by abstaining from spitting on the road, littering and public urinating. We are running our campaigns for the same on a blog and we would request you to check our posts, write comments and participate in discussions on the blog. Here are the links to our blog posts :


1. Do these pictures bother you?
2. Your Experiences with the truth.
3. The "Keep India Clean" campaign.
4. "Keep India Clean" Campaign: Mascots unveiled.
Follow us on our Twitter page :-!/keepindiaclean
Thanks and Regards,
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