- Fans helped clean up the heaps of litter left behind by 23,000 spectators
- A photograph of this effort has gone viral on Facebook
- Stadiums are some of the largest generators of solid waste
Unsightly stadiums littered with heaps of plastic, food bits and sports memorabilia are generally considered to be a normal fallout of major sporting events. However, in a stadium in Shillong on Sunday, celebrating fans won hearts and took everyone by surprise when they began to clean up all the litter generated by some 23,000 spectators. This mini drive for swachhta took place after Mizoram’s Aizawl FC won the I-League, one of India’s biggest professional men’s football tournaments.
While social media has been busy celebrating the football club’s victory, even more people have lauded the fans’ gesture.
“Thank you Aizwal football fans for cleaning the trash after the match yesterday… speaks volumes of your attitude. We, the rest, should learn from them,” wrote one fan on Facebook, in a post that has gone viral.
Thank you Aizwal football fans for cleaning the trash after the match yesterday at Polo … speaks volumes of your attitude. We, the rest, should learn from them.
At the time of writing, this photograph has over 840 shares and 1,800 likes.
Even the Swachh Bharat Mission applauded the move, taking to Twitter to compliment the football fans for setting an example.
— Swachh Bharat Urban (@SwachhBharatGov) May 2, 2017
Union Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports Vijay Goel also tweeted about this saying, “After I-League win, AizawlFC fans clean up Shillong stadium, win hearts. Real Swachh Bharat example, learnings for all.”
Around the world, sporting events pose huge solid waste management problems. Stadiums and arenas bring a high volume of people in one place at one time which means that the sheer volume of garbage generated is very high. For instance, during the Indian Premier League in 2016, a petition filed with the National Green Tribunal had calculated that 40,000 spectators had generated a whopping 10 metric tonnes of waste during the course of a single match.