Puri beach witnesses largest coastal cleanup initiative in world


Puri: In a bid to keep Puri’s shoreline clean and beautiful, the district administration on Saturday launched the Mo Beach cleanup initiative, the world’s largest coastal clean-up drive aiming to sensitize people about the importance of clean beaches.

The campaign kick-started in the last week of June and post the massive destructive Cyclone Fani, the clean-up drive was even more charged up.

It was organized on the occasion of International Coastal clean-up Day.

The drive started at 6:00 AM with thousands of volunteers from all the walks of life signing up their names on the beach sand.

The volunteers took an oath to protect the oceans and beaches by the simple mantra of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle of waste, especially plastic waste. Another intriguing activity at the beach was a life-size human chain formation of Mo Beach Puri typography.

Forest and Environment Minister Bikram Keshari Arukh, famous Bollywood actor Vidyut Jammwal and internationally acclaimed artist and writer  Nandita Das were spotted at the drive while supporting the initiative.

They joined volunteers from PRIs, SHG, Fishermen community, beachside vendors, hotel owners photographers, lifeguards, tourist guides, Sebayat community of Shri Jagannath Temple, Government officials and employees to name a few.

Puri beach witnesses largest coastal cleanup initiative in world

It was a heart-warming picture to see the voluntary participation of hundreds of people who have been motivated to stop unnecessary littering and also extended help towards the cleaning drive.

The drive ended by 9:00 AM with volunteers cleaning up more than 100+ KM beach stretch which removed plastic waste, sanitary napkins, scraps of paper, torn clothes, liquor bottles, beer, soft drink cans, and many other toxic waste materials.

The initiative is not a one day gimmick but has a well-designed execution plan to it. Every Tuesday of the week, the beach near Puri along with a dozen other places and coast get cleaned regularly by the local volunteers, students, officials, senior citizens, local shopkeepers, pilgrims and sometimes tourists as well.

The campaign is not just helping to keep the beaches clean but indirectly forming a community which cares about the environment. From women to students and from the transgender community to differently-abled, this initiative is owned by the community bottom-up; Mo Beach in essence and quintessence.

Along with the District Administration, this campaign is being financed and mentored by ICZMP under Forest and Environment Department Government of Odisha, Tourist Department Government of Odisha, Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC), Odisha Pollution Control Board (OPCB) and The Bharat Scouts and Guides. Renowned sand artist and Padma Shri awardee Sudarshan Patnaik is the ambassador of the initiative.

Mo Beach Puri is one of the largest beach clean-up activities took up to make it environment-friendly, plastic & garbage-free, to restore its beauty and to combat the rising climate change.