His cleanliness fetish has made him a legend in Karauli
Balveer Singh Chaudhary of Sanet village, which is today a clean model village in Karauli district of Rajasthan has become a local legend because of his fetish for cleanliness. His commitment levels for hygiene and sanitation are legion and he is known to literally raise a storm in the house if his daily cleanliness goals are not met. Balveer, who was born in 1992, the oldest among his siblings but his weak financial condition forced him to eke out a living at a very early age. He had to drop his studies after class 10 since money was hard to come by. By sheer dint of hard work, he managed to improve his family’s economic status and during the years 2008 to 2012 he shifted base to Faridabad where he got a job. In 2012, during vacation he came back to his village with a dream in his eye and vision in his head. He was committed to do something substantial to empower his village and decided to stay back and not return to work.
It was at this point in time when FINISH Society started the cleanliness program in Sanet and when Project Associate Rajendra Singh met with Balveer Singh, the latter decided to become a key member of the cleanliness initiative as a volunteer. Soon, life took an altogether new meaning for him since that day. He started to motivated the villagers to make the village more beautiful and clean, and with this resolution as his driving force, he once visited Mathura for Govardhan Parikrama, with the Sarpanch of the Gram Panchayat. On the way he saw people getting themselves tattooed in the name of their loved ones or inscribed the name of God, spouse, girlfriend etc. Deeply impressed with this exercise, he realised cleanliness was his lifelong love so he got tattooed ‘Clean Sanet’ (Swachh Sanet) inscribed on his hand, even though he had a fight with his wife right there for his obsession for cleanliness.
From that day on, his commitment levels became even higher and he actively engaged himself in project activities and got busy till late in the nights. It so happened that one day he came late from a night (Ratri Chaupal) community meeting, and his wife was waiting for him as it had become her habit. He very matter of factly told his wife to clean all the utensils left over after dinner and segregate the waste before going to bed. His wife lost her temper and in anger she not only did not clean the utensils she also refused to segregate the waste. When Balveer saw this defiance, he went out of the house and said that he would refuse to come back into the house until all utensils were cleaned and the waste segregated. In the beginning, his wife thought he would cool down and come inside once he saw the light of reason. An adamant Balveer refused to relent and fell asleep outside the house. In the middle of the night, his wife cleaned the utensils and segregated the waste and implored her husband to come inside. Only then did our hero come into the house and agreed to go to bed.
When asked about his adamant behaviour Balveer brushes off the question and proudly says that his two young daughters can tell the difference between wet and dry waste. The home composter is kept in the house for wet waste, in which they make compost and one of the two girls hand over the dry waste in the garbage collection cart.
sometimes- when his wife keeps the wet and dry waste together, arguments follow, but then softens up and motivates his wife that since he has made a resolution to transform the village into a clean model village this would not be possible without changing the behaviour of his own house, His wife now has become his fan and avidly supports him and the two together fulfil this pledge of cleanliness. Today, his example is cited by one and all if anybody even tries to throw waste out of their homes