“We are responsible for the garbage around”
Cleanest city in the world: From most of the countries I have visited, the USA, the UK, Dubai, Canada are very clean, but New Zealand needs a special mention. As soon as one enters the airport, one has to undergo a strict check-up. The authorities even check your shoe soles for dust or dirt. In the UK, the smaller towns are not only pretty but they are pristine and well-maintained. In places like York, car park is very restricted.
In India, Mumbai is one of those unclean cities. I reside in a premium locality – Lokhandwala. Every evening, the residents are subjected to constant garbage stench. Why do we pay high taxes for this kind of environment? Our railway stations are pathetic and stink. For the same reason, I avoid travelling by trains. Having said that, we also have cities like Chandigarh and Bangalore, and hill stations like Darjeeling, Shillong and Shimla which are clean and very well-maintained. With Commonwealth Games round the corner, even New Delhi is turning clean and green.
My view on cleanliness is that a person who is conscious about personal hygiene would choose to stay only in a home or locality which is clean and tidy. Many of us have this habit of throwing covers or wrappers on the streets. You can’t blame the government or civic officials for this. Each one of us is equally responsible for the kind of mess we create in our country. People carry a callous attitude and there are no stringent laws to keep a tab on this kind of behaviour.
I try not to litter. I put the waste in the garbage bins only. Let us make use of the bins wisely rather than keeping them as show-pieces. If I see someone littering or spitting, I definitely go out of my way and stop him/her from doing that. In such situations, being a celebrity helps. You can convince people from littering or spitting. Sometimes they are rude and sometimes they are embarrassed. At least, they will think twice before littering or spitting next time.
Our public toilets are in a pathetic condition. Wherever and whenever you go, they are bad throughout the year. The irony is that many people do not even know how to use them. To be safe, I always carry a bottle of Dettol with me.
I cannot perform in an unclean surrounding. I cannot think of working in a studio where there is stench and filth all around.