‘Let’s Mask India’, but with cloth


Over the past week, volunteers have not only been distributing free, reusable masks to residents of slums in the city, but also returning to get feedback from them. This is part of a ‘Let’s Mask India’ initiative by the textile industry in partnership with the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and The Ugly Indians (TUI), an anonymous group of volunteers.

Bengaluru, which is the hub of the textile and garment industry, has a skilled workforce. Seven garment factories have signed up for the initiative. TUI, with its strong ground network, is looking into the distribution aspect.

“We are trying to collate data on the frontline workers, including healthcare professionals, ASHA workers, pourakarmikas, traffic police and others,” said a TUI volunteer.

Ever since the civic administration started levying fines for failing to wear masks, many people have taken to wearing disposable ones.

“However, disposable masks are meant for medical professionals. Due to lack of proper disposal, they are getting mixed with waste and are also landing up at dry waste collection centres. Conventional wisdom says that cloth masks are the best. Masks should become a garment that people own, a personal choice, much like underwear,” the volunteer added.

BBMP’s Special Commissioner (Solid Waste Management) D. Randeep cited the civic body’s campaign on masks — Be a star, wear a mask — which stresses on the use of reusable, cloth masks. “Many people are switching over to cloth masks to reduce waste and also the associated risks involved in using disposable masks,” he said.

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For details, visit www.letsmaskindia.com.

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Sagar Biswas

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