A Mangaluru Corporator Enters Manhole to Unclog Pipes. We Need More Leaders Like That


A Mangaluru Corporator Enters Manhole to Unclog Pipes. We Need More Leaders Like That

Illustration: Reynold Mascarenhas

Manohar Shetty, a Bharatiya Janata Party corporator from Mangaluru, just showed people what hands-on leadership from an elected official looks like. When a rainwater drain in his ward began to overflow on Wednesday, Shetty took it upon himself to clean the drain. It had become clogged with garbage, and Shetty had made repeated attempts to have it cleaned, but to no avail. So, he decided to do the task himself, achieving admiration from the internet for his effort.

The report on Shetty’s decision to take the job of cleaning the drain into his own hands was first published by News18. It stated that the overflowing drain was leading to garbage spilling out on the streets, inconveniencing and endangering both vehicular traffic as well as pedestrians. Shetty was unable to find the manpower to clean the drain, as the workers felt it was too dangerous to enter during the monsoon season. So Shetty called for a vehicle fitted with a high-speed water jet from the city corporation, and after the vehicle operator also refused to enter the drain, he did so himself.

With four of his workers, Shetty proceeded to clear the drain of garbage and restored order. The photos of him emerging from the manhole went viral, and earned him some well-deserved praise from all quarters.

However, the first-time elected representative has remained humble. In the News18 report, he is quoted as saying “We are elected representatives. If we can do something quickly, we must do that. In Mangaluru, it rains heavily during the four months of monsoon; we can’t postpone such things… If people face civic problems in my ward, it is my primary responsibility to help them.”

Manohar Shetty’s example is one that all elected officials should seek to follow. The prime directive for every politician is to serve the public first and foremost, and Shetty has just shown the way.