A massive clean-up drive, Jallosh – Clean Coasts, was kicked off on Saturday evening with simultaneous clean-ups being conducted at nine beaches and four rivers in the city.
The three-day campaign is being organised by NGO Project Mumbai in association with Beach Please initiative. The campaign will end on June 5, World Environment Day. Shishir Joshi, CEO and co-founder of Project Mumbai, said, “Project Mumbai has consistently aimed at bringing like-minded institutions together for a common larger initiative, which can lead to social transformation. Our purpose is to work for people and positive change. Jallosh – Clean Coasts is another initiative to bring people, authorities, and corporates under one roof for a common cause, to protect and clean Mumbai and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region’s water bodies.”
Employees of PepsiCo, a champion partner of the initiative, were seen volunteering in large numbers for cleaning up Mahim Beach and Mithi river.
Neelima Dwivedi, vice-president, government affairs, PepsiCo India, said, “Our target is to transform 100% of our recyclable, compostable, and biodegradable packaging by 2025. PepsiCo has been actively working across multiple States to collect, segregate and sustainably recover 100% of its plastic packaging towards effective plastic waste management by 2021.”
Malhar Kamble, founder of Beach Please, recalled how they began the drive on a much smaller scale in September 2017. He said, “We are not a registered organisation. We are just a bunch of like-minded youths working towards the same goal. Whatever money we spend on these drives comes out of our own pockets.”
Mr. Kamble added, “We find people participating in large numbers for beach clean-up drives, but Mithi river has become so toxic that people are not ready to come out and help us. We are barely getting 50 volunteers. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s response hasn’t been so great too. We barely get any support from the authorities. How long can we ourselves keep funding these drives?”