A month after the municipal corporation (MC) started the execution of the much-hyped 'night sanitation' plan to keep the streets around the Golden Temple clean, hardly any change can be seen in the area.
Dirt and heaps of garbage greet tourists who come from all over the world to visit the Holy City, and especially the Golden Temple. They carry away a poor impression of the city, which spread rapidly through word-of-mouth, but it seems that the authorities concerned are least bothered.
They turn a blind eye even as waste from drains is dumped on the roads, making a mockery of hygienic and sanitary practices. The tourists, who go bare-foot from the Golden Temple to the neigbouring gurudwaras are the worst hit. In spite of seminars and conferences being organised from time to time, followed by grand promises to ensure cleanliness in the city's streets, no action takes place.
HT spoke to shopkeepers and tourist information officials regarding the cleanliness situation in the city, and most of them rued that while various governments had earlier announced a number of big plans, but they never acted upon them.
Some residents, however, blamed the locals, who they said add to the severity of the situation by littering the streets and throwing garbage wherever they feel like.
"Such people prove the adage 'common sense is not so common'," they say.
We should give up the habit of littering our surroundings and the MC must understand that actions speak louder than words.
Sehaj Gulati, teacher
It is funny when the authorities announce any plans for cleanliness, as in reality no efforts are made to keep the city clean.
Aasif Ali, local shopkeeper
Cleanliness is at its zenith in the temple, but it will be great if its surroundings are also kept neat and clean.
Zameer Nathani, tourist from Mumbai
We should feel ashamed of ourselves if we cannot keep our holy and historical city, also a tourist hub, clean.
Swaran Kaur Bal, Punjabi writer
We are making constant efforts and by October, results will be more satisfactory.
Balraj Singh, district tourist officer
We are constantly making efforts to keep the city clean. We will also start slapping penalties on those seen littering.
DPS Kharbanda, municipal commissioner