The Queen of misty mountains, Kodaikanal, might soon vie for the title of Queen of garbage hills. The lovely green slopes of the Palani Hills are paying the toll for the popularity of the hilltop getaway, and how.
Tourists leave a growing trail of litter – water bottles, empty packets of chips, biscuits and every thing they can possibly want to dispose off through the windows of buses and cars.
Plastic is banned in markets and around the popular lake, shopkeepers keep a stock of paper bags made from recycled newspapers. But fruit vendors are prone to slip in a banned plastic cover to keep the fruit from getting squashed. Other hawkers dish out food and drink on plastic or paper plates and cups, all of which fall all around and everywhere but in the trash cans, which are very often seen looking forlorn even as the pile of rubbish around them grow.
None question them; a few valiant signs adjure people to Keep Kodai Clean, and most often these are hidden and obviously unheeded.