Downtown

Spark honours conservancy staff in Besant Nagar

Spark honoured two consevancy staff at Besant Nagar. Photo. M. Moorthy   | Photo Credit: M_Moorthy

Tears rolling down her face, she began to address a small gathering at Besant Nagar. “I never thought that I would be honoured for sweeping streets and clearing the garbage,” says S. Vasantha, a conservancy staff.

She was one among the two to be honoured on the occasion of International Women’s Day by Spark, a civic activists group based in Besant Nagar.

Vasantha thanked the Spark members and said, “I had never ever considered my work inferior as it is my livelihood. I only take pride in doing it.”

“When I take a look at the streets after cleaning them, I feel happy and there is a sense of satisfaction. But that rewarding experience is short-lived. The next moment, someone comes and throws a plastic cover of garbage and litter the place around the bin which actually discourages us at times,” adds Vasantha, the sole breadwinner of her family. Vasantha sweeps Eighth and 11th Cross Street in Besant Nagar and clears the garbage.

“Even during the floods in December, I did my job everyday. We had to clear the branches of trees. Work was quite tiring then and by the time I reached home, it would be 3 a.m.,” said Vasantha.

Along with her, B. Mariyayi, who is speech-impaired, was honoured.

On the occasion, E. Celine Mary, junior engineer of the Greater Chennai Corporation was also honoured in recognition of her service during the floods. “During the floods, she stayed back after 7 p.m. and made immediate arrangements to pump out the stagnant water when there was no power,” says Rajeshwari Arunachalam, secretary, Elliots Beach Flat Owners Welfare Association, Besant Nagar.

Members of Spark — Kamakshi Subramaniam, Sekhar Raghavan, T.D. Babu, C. Ramakrishnan, Namachivayam, Geeta Padmanabhan and Rajeshwari Arunachalam – and residents of Adyar, Besant Nagar, Gandhi Nagar, Shastri Nagar and Kalaskhetra Colony, were present.

Kamakshi Subramaniam and T.D. Babu said that the main objective of the meet was to honour people in our own neighbourhoods who render service to us. Other associations should also recognise such people in their neighbourhoods.


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Printable version | Jul 31, 2021 2:02:05 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/downtown/spark-honours-conservancy-staff-in-besant-nagar/article8346184.ece

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