Aren’t we Guwahatians IDIOTS??

Tuesday, 29 September 2020



Aren’t we Guwahatians IDIOTS??

Swapnil Bharali | December 07, 2019 13:20 hrs

We at G Plus uploaded a piece of news on our Facebook page on the evening of 4th December last. To our satisfaction, the piece of news got us 90 shares within the first 20 minutes along with a plethora of comments giving indications that it will eventually go viral and which it surely did. There was however, a morbid sense of dissatisfaction as well that we happened to be the ones to break the news; dissatisfaction stemming from a deep realization that we Guwahatians are nothing short of idiots when it comes to respecting our city and keeping it clean. The headline of the news read thus:

“Guwahati Dividers ‘Wrapped’ in Plastic as Protection Against Pan/Gutka Stains”

This dirty practice of spitting paan/gutka on the roads and especially the freshly painted road dividers has had every right thinking individual of the city scratching their heads to find a solution. I recall a tweet from advocate Anita Verma a few days ago which I quote verbatim:

“We need to find solutions to this menance ,people will not stop from eating pan tamul, gutka etc.Let's all put up our suggestions &govt can take a decision & implement the ones which is feasible. Strict measures are definitely reqd”

Among a number of replies to this was one from senior journalist Mrinal Talukdar who also attached a video that bore testimony to our shamelessness. I quote him verbatim too:

“Looking at the brand new divider of the GS Road, wonder do we citizens actually worth it. Why are we so shameless? Just see tomorrow, how the whole divider have been "Paan Puked" by "Citizens of Guwahati".

Anita Verma went on to tweet a number of suggestions on how to stop the menace and each suggestion, while making a lot of sense, hardly seemed to be a solution to the idiocy that is deeply ingrained in the veins of us apathetic Guwahatians. Let me reproduce the six suggestions here just so this discussion is taken even more seriously.

1. How about closing the right side windows of the buses? 

2. When people buy tamul pan, a small paper bag must be made mandatory to be given to them (like paper bags provided in the flights to puke).

3. Every public transport should have a public announcement system (recorded) reminding people not to puke on the roads, not to dirty the surroundings etc etc. 

4. A little harsh, but imposing of fine can also be thought about.

5. Please bring in a compulsory subject or period in schools creating awareness for environment, nature, management of waste etc educating the young will definitely make them responsible citizens.

6. Have spaces for discussions amongst like-minded people, who would give finesse to the ongoing projects. I see so much development everywhere and feel happy. All the city lacks is proper sense amongst its people. @himantabiswa @sarbanandsonwal

Point no. 1 is very pertinent here. From long observation of who actually spits on the dividers, I have reason to state that it is the private city bus drivers and cabbies that are the champions of this game. More often than not, I have personally seen this. Thereafter, the spitting comes from the passenger windows of the city buses; clearly these are people who may be residents of the city but who have no sense of belonging to Guwahati or may be outsiders and happen to be just passing through on work in which case their apathy towards the city is understandable but unpardonable. 

Guwahati’s traffic is such that it is impossible to catch the errant idiot in the bus ahead either physically or on a camera. The whole spitting activity takes place in a jiffy and finding an immediate solution seems a far cry. The municipal authorities using plastic sheets to protect the newly painted dividers, especially when the hue and cry for discontinuing plastic usage has reached its peak, is a nothing but a great shame on us that make us look like listless nincompoops in front of the whole world. 

Paan/gutka and tamul will always be consumed so long the stuff is available. But we Guwahatians truly need to stop being the idiots that we are with this spitting practice and we have to stop right now.

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