Bengaluru, a city which has been expanding at a colossal rate, is generating more than 4000 tonnes of waste daily. Well for most of us this is just a number that we tend to brush aside. However, for Anirudh Dutt, this is a reason for concern. He along with his 5000 plus registered volunteers have made it a sole mission to clean the Bengaluru city.
Who Is Anirudh Dutt?
Anirudh Dutt is a 24-year-old civil engineering graduate, who founded Let’s Be The Change (Team LBTC). LBTC is a non-profit organisation which aims to build a cleaner and healthier society by working with the people and the Government. Recipient of the ‘Rising Star of The Year Award’ in 2015 from the Namma Bengaluru Foundation, he founded the LBTC when he was 18. He always wanted to give something back to society. While talking to The Logical Indian Team, he said, “ I wanted to do something that will make our society look good”. He said that it was before the CET placement when he proposed the idea of cleaner Bengaluru to his friend. Getting nostalgic, Anirudh said that only 10 of his friend showed up and agreed to help him.
How did the Let’s Be The Change start?
While asking on how they got to know about what needs to be done, Anirudh said, “ In the beginning, in order to get a clear idea on what needs to be done, we conducted 3-4 surveys. We asked people from various localities what their concerns were.” Most of their surveys found that people were worried about the garbages that was being dumped in their neighbourhood. Understanding the issue, Anirudh took the help of social media to ask more people to come forward and help them to clean garbages. People showed up but not in huge numbers.
The Network Expanded
Slowly people started to know about them, and they got more messages asking them to help and clean their neighbourhoods. However, some failed to understand their motive and even called them for cleaning their farmhouse. Anirudh going down the memory lane, with a giggle said, “Once we even received a call from someone asking us to clean their farmhouse. Some obviously did not get what we were trying to do!” He then decided that it is better to work along with government officials. LBTC started collaborating with BBMP (Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike). Anirudh said, “ Members of BBMP were really helpful and were open to suggestions”. While BBMP started cleaning waste by getting a tip from LBTC, the LBTC started focusing on a new initiative called Cleanathon. They started painting the areas after they were cleaned. It mostly had a message for people for keeping the area clean.
Every year on October 2, the community undertakes big projects and tries to achieve bigger targets. For instance, on October 2, 2016, LBTC cleaned and beautified Kempegowda Bus Stand (Majestic). Near around 400 people volunteered to help the team clean the bus stand. “N.S Ramakanth of the Solid Waste Management Round Table helped us to make more people aware in the bus stand. Our volunteers stepped inside the bus and asked the passengers to not spit and throw waste outside or inside the bus”. On October 2 of 2017, around 1500 people came together to fix garbage dumps in over 72 wards. In 2018, GO Native in collaboration with BBMP, United Way Bengaluru, Namma Nimma Cycle Foundation, and LBTC hosted the first plog run marathon in Bengaluru. On that very day, around 33 tonnes of plastic were collected within 12 hours. This fetched them a title for Guinness Book of World.
When asked about the future plans, Anirudh said that we want the community to expand. “ We are planning to set a volunteer community in southern states first. Chennai or Hyderabad is our first priority and later we want to grow throughout the country”. On asking if he has any message to our readers, he said, “We want people to approach us with their waste related queries and concerns. We would love to help them which in turn will make the society look cleaner”.
The Logical Indian Take
The Logical Indian deeply respects Anirudh’s initiative that has changed the outlook of some places in Bengaluru. His determination to make the city clean has helped the LBTC community to expand. We ask all our readers to take inspiration from him and try to keep the surroundings clean.