Collector Veera Raghava Rao inaugurates a cleaning driver inside Meenakshi Amman temple. (Photo: DC)
MADURAI: The spirit of Singapore appears to have informed the temple city of Madurai. Those found littering in and around the famous Meenakshi Sundareshwarar shrine here will be fined Rs 50 each from September 30, while informers will each get two 'prasadam laddus' as reward.
The Madurai district collector Veera Raghava Rao made this announcement while inaugurating a cleaning drive inside the temple and in the four Chittirai streets around it, as part of Swachh Bharat initative on Monday.
The collector, city corporation commissioner Dr Aneesh Sekhar, joint commissioner of the temple N Natarajan, and the temple Thakkar Karumuthu T Kannan along with students took 'Swachh pledge' near 'Potramarai Kulam' in the temple.
To emphasis the importance of keeping pilgrim centres clean, the collector himself wielded the broom to remove garbage found inside the temple and cleaned up few metres on Chittirai street. Foreign tourists also enthusiastically took part in the 'Swachh' drive.
"Dustbins will be placed at every 50 feet in the inner 'Prakarams' of the temple and in the four Chittirai streets. The temple administration will insist on the devotees and tourists visiting the shrine to drop any waste only in the dustbins," Mr. Rao told DC.
This initiative was aimed at bringing attitudinal change among the people and thereby make the place of worship and heritage sites litter-free in Madurai, he said. "From September 30, the temple authorities will impose a fine of Rs 50 on people found throwing garbage inside the temple. And in the surrounding streets, the city corporation will collect the fine amount," declared the collector.
Though the city corporation has appointed 'thooimai kavalar' to closely identify the violators, the public who provide information on people littering with evidence will be given 'two prasadham laddu' each by the temple administration, said Rao.
The district collector fervently urged civil society members to actively participate in this drive to keep the environment clean.