Kohima: A total of 349 students from 18 villages took to the streets of the capital city to clean Kohima town as part of a mass cleanliness drive organised by the Northern Angami Students’ Union (NASU), which was carried out with the hope to make Kohima “a better place for living”.

As part of the third edition of the NASU cleanliness drive held under the theme “Clean, hygienic and healthy Kohima”, student volunteers cleaned the stretch from Dzüvürü Bridge to Sanuorü Bridge on Friday morning. NASU President Aneizo Keditsu said the drive “relied on fostering in students a way of living to keep the environment clean”.

Keditsu said as students comprise a large number of the population across the state, some simple steps taken by them can play a major role in cleanliness. He cited how students can educate the people around them about the use of dustbins each time they see a person littering, hoping the little habits will create a positive impact and could possibly make Nagaland one of the cleanest states not only in India but throughout the world.

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Unlike previous years, the recently held cleanliness drive received more participation from the NASU federating units, with additional participation from the colonies and shopkeepers. Besides volunteers from 18 villages out of the 20 affiliated units that cleaned the streets in Kohima, the Western Angami Students Union (WASU), senior leaders, and Angami Students’ Union (ASU) executives also took part in the cleanliness drive.

Out of all the places, he said, Kohima was chosen to be cleaned as it is the state capital. “We have the pride, the feeling of our elders saying ‘Ura Uvie’. So, cleaning Kohima is like cleaning your own house, your own surroundings, your own environment, and trying to keep it clean and healthy,” he said.

Keditsu said all volunteers wore protective gear like masks and gloves during the conduct of the cleanliness drive. He acknowledged the volunteers, most of whom came all the way from their respective villages to be part of the cleanliness drive. He said that the volunteers also suggested conducting such drives at least 2-3 times a year.

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Kohima Municipal Council (KMC) Administrator Lanusenla Longkumer, who launched the drive, lauded the student body for the “great” initiative. “We should continue to do this kind of social work not only once in a year but should do every month and make our city a clean and healthy city,” she told the students.

Longkumer further said that all citizens must learn to make cleanliness a way of life. Challenging the students to follow a sustainable lifestyle, the official also urged the need to create more awareness on maintaining a healthy surrounding.

Appreciating the initiative, one student volunteer shared that hygiene and sanitation are among the humblest of civic virtue and so cleanliness is a noble step for humans to stay healthy.

Keditsu informed that NASU will further focus on educating students and all inhabitants to make cleanliness a way of life. He expressed gratitude to the KMC administrator and her team for providing dumping trucks to collect garbage collected by the students.

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