No concern for hygiene

No concern for hygiene

Distressing Behaviour

No concern for hygiene

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) imposed a ban on spitting a few years ago, but it looks like this hasn’t had any impact on people.

Despite the ban, people expectorate with impunity. They not only disregard passers-by but also completely ignore the hygiene factor. Worse are those who spit out of moving autos and buses. People wonder why no thought is spared for the inconvenience and embarrassment such an act may cause to those around.

Metrolife interacts with BBMP officials to understand why there is no attempt being made to control this habit among people, as well as to the ordinary people to get their perspective on the issue.

The officials with the BBMP throw their hands up in the air and say that more than them issuing a warning, people must volunteer to stop spitting and adhere to some self-discipline and hygiene. Dr Lokesh, health officer, BBMP (south zone), says that getting people to throw garbage in the designated spots is a huge challenge that the officials are battling with on a daily basis — convincing them not to spit is much tougher.

“People must know that they shouldn’t spit in public. It not only causes a nuisance to passers-by, but spreads diseases as well. More than a law, I think public cooperation and involvement is what is lacking,” he says. He feels no amount of fines or enforcement will bring about a change. “The mindset of people must change. The same man who spits in India will not dare to do the same when he goes to Singapore, for instance,” he observes.  

The ordinary people state that the fine for spitting in public places must be hiked and attitudes must change. Padmini, a professional, says, “There may be several systems in place but a section of the public will continue to flout the rules. Spot fines are the only way out of this problem.”

Bharath Naidu, another professional, thinks that the BBMP is not doing enough to ensure that public places are clean. “The authorities simply impose a fine and wait and watch. That’s all they do. There is no enforcement whatsoever. There must be more awareness created on television and advertisements about the ill-effects of spitting,” thinks Bharath.

Hashmi Vinod, a student, observes, “The tendency of people to spit anytime and anywhere has increased. The banning of gutka may reduce the problem, but people must take the first step to make a difference.”