It all started on a full moon day during the course of a casual conversation when we were on a trek to Velliangiri hills. Siva was talking about CCC with lots of enthusiasm and he was way too excited and committed on making CCC 6 a great success and reaching out to more people. He then asked me why don't i do it in my hometown and mentioned that we can cover it under India Clean Sweep which is an initiative by Team CCC to spread the awareness to more cities. The very idea of doing such an event in my home town excited me and to add with it the fact that am gonna work with like minded people. "Sure machi, Kalakidalam (definitely will do it pal)" said I. Siva then handed me over the SPOC contact which is Aravindh who is taking care of ICS.
Being a strict officer that he is, he regularly followed up with us on the arrangements and other progress, up until i completed this write up and sent it to him :)
Even though we gave the commitment to Siva that we will do the cleanup, we were just 2 people, myself (Vijayakumar) and my buddy Vijay Anand. Then Vijay Anand brought Sharath - an energetic engineering student into this planning activity. Initially we had planned to do a clean up at Ramakkal Lake which is one of the main lakes in Dharmapuri. We started putting up event in facebook and invited our friends and foes to join hands with us. Sharath was the man behind all this which he did with the guidance of Aravindh.
In the meantime, I had the opportunity to discuss about this with one of my facebook friend - Niyas, who is a reporter in Indian Express. I was and am a regular follower of his posts in facebook. Most of his posts really made me think out of box giving varied views. As i went on explaining about this cleanup to him, he appreciated our efforts and gave some suggestions and inputs as well.
"Vijay we already started working in Lakkiyampatti lake. We are doing it on a regular basis there, it would be helpful if you guys join with us and help us in finishing this lake cleanup. It will be a ongoing process instead of one day cleanup, since this lake is getting polluted continuously" said Niyas. It made sense to us and so we started working with him.
On the day of the cleanup we reached Lakkiyampatti lake. Niyas welcomed us and showed us the work they have done till date and explained how we are going to progress on the cleanup. He is doing the cleanup of this lake in association with Thalirgal team. The ideas and plans that he is having for the lake was very inspiring, from building a yoga center, a walking lane, a children library, etc. With his speech he almost visually brought up a cleaned lake in front of my eyes.
We were around 20 people in the lake at 6.30 and we got started with the cleanup. We collected around 50 bags full of plastics and papers around lake. Most of us met each other for the very first time and we never felt like we were strangers. Since it was our very first cleanup in our home town, we were not able to bring in big attention or awareness to the people. But ...................