Question "“ "Would the students' learning enhance if they are sitting in a neat air conditioned room on comfortable benches, as compared to sweaty, dirty places with broken benches?"
- An idealist's would answer "No! Their learning just depends upon the teacher and their zeal to learn!"
- However, deep inside, every one of us would acknowledge the fact that factors like these do influence the outcome of the students.
For every Indian, the past months have been an exciting time to say the least. An unprecedented 'Modi' wave ensured that we see an outspoken PM assume the office after a decade. If you are a leader of over 1.2 billion people, the world expects you to talk about huge plans ranging from industrial surge to nuclear energy and rocket science. However, ever since our new PM came to power, most of his public speeches have centred around minute things, and most noticeably, cleanliness. His call for the 'Swachh Bharat' campaign from the Red Fort on 15th August is both a necessity and a need. And rightly, the first call has been given to the schools.
Funnily enough, the same Indians that won't think twice before spitting on the roads or throwing a wrapper while in India, won't even dare to do the same while they are in a foreign country. And as soon as they come back to India, their first reaction would be, "India is pretty dirty! I went to this ________ country and it is so neat & clean!" This mentality has been passed on from generations. If a change needs to be brought, it must be brought from the grass root levels to have the maximum impact. Bearing this in mind, it was heart-warming to see a number of school students picking up the broom on 2nd October and cleaning their premises and the surrounding areas. The call for the 'Swachh Bharat' campaign has certainly hit the chords with the students. To add to it, the HRD ministry has also done its bit by releasing a handbook containing the best cleanliness practices undertaken by the schools across the country. Apart from the common premises, another area which needs regular cleaning in the schools is the toilets! While it may look like a pity concern but anyone who has witnessed a Government school toilet would surely know that it is hardly cleaned once in a couple of months! Here, we must mention that this is not a case of lack of cleanliness employees, but it is the case of lack of intent. If an employee is supposed to perform a task 30 times a month, but just ends up doing it once a month, we surely have a long way to go before we can be proud of ourselves as a nation.
When the students observe people around them skipping their actual work, you can't blame them for learning the same. It would take much more than a broom to clean our nation! Let this clarion call of 'Swachh Bharat' be taken as seriously as we take our clean clothes!