Saturday was a chilling weekend for many with parties and long drives but hundreds of Mumbai residents decided to join hands to clean up the extremely polluted Versova Beach. Led by globally acclaimed swimmer, a maritime lawyer and a global advocate for cleaner oceans Lewis Pugh, the clean-up drive had around 400 volunteers and they managed to collect 282 tonne garbage from the beach.
Lewis, also the United Nations Patron of the Oceans, has been keeping track of the Versova beach cleanliness movement for the past 43 weeks which witnessed removal of 1.7 million kilos of trash. And when he arrived in the city to purify the sea, he was shocked to see the amount waste thrown on the beach. The enthusiasm of the volunteers impressed him a lot and he tweeted:
This was the biggest clean up initiative in the world. It is sad how Mumbai’s beaches are littered every day. Juhu, Gorai, Madh, Versova, Aksa, Girgaum Chowpatty, Chimbai, Erangal and Dadar – all the beaches are primarily garbage galleries. Plastic bottles, cement bags, clothing, food packet wraps, etc. are widely thrown at the beaches. The pollution is so vast that the environmentalists have estimated more than 100 tonnes of trash in the Mumbai beaches. The marine life is highly affected by this.