The Great Indian Litterbug

When I was first placed in my new home, the corner of a street, I heard the men mutter about how they were wasting their time. Of course, that got me really indignant. Why would placing me in a new home mean it was an utter wastage of time for them, eh? After all, I was prepared to do my duty.

How hard could it possibly be to eat up all the waste paper, the wrappers of chocolates, the discarded newspapers and the innumerable cigarette butts? I would keep them all intact, and I would proudly deliver it to my older brother, the Big, Bad Garbage Vat. He could scoff all he wanted about how a Little Litter Box wouldn’t be able to handle the corner of the road...but I was determined to prove him wrong.

On the very first morning after the men had left, as I eagerly waited for the first piece of scrap to descend to my belly – I had the weirdest feeling someone was breathing down my neck. The next minute I knew who it was, as the muffled “woof, woof” was followed by both of us toppling over.

Someone was kind enough to rescue the dog, but it was awhile before another kind soul came forward to help me back on my feet. You see, I tried to get back on my feet, but only resulted in rolling further away. I convinced myself that nothing could possibly be worse than that morning.

Only, only I hadn’t met my nemesis: The Great Indian Litterbug.

I could see the little litterbug eating his ice-cream from a distance. I was confident he would gift me his wrapper as a reward for patiently waiting there, with my mouth wide open. But as he finished it, he looked towards his father, “Baba, where do I throw this wrapper?”

This was drawn for inspiration :)

I could feel the hope rise in my chest and my head swell with pride, feeling confident his father would single me out and point his son towards me. But instead, the dad just shrugged and said, “Oh just drop it, will you? This is not your home.”

That made me sad. But my belly was the wrapper’s home, I wanted to shout. You cannot separate two lovers who are meant to be together. I belonged with the wrapper, as the wrapper did with me. How could anyone cruelly end our love story even before it began?

With a heavy heart I looked for someone else to love. It was heartbreaking to see my beloved wrapper lying just a few feet away from me – and I couldn’t play the hero. A car whizzing past caught my attention. I heard snatches from their conversation.

“Ma, I’m done with the chocolate....I want to throw the wrapper.”


That insanely beautiful word caught my ears. I thought the Universe was going to grant my wish. Then came the reply, “Just toss it out of the window, will you?”

Yes! Yes! I was right outside their window. She reached out and carelessly let go off the wrapper. And as it floated towards me, a gust of wind took it away – and the wrapper landed right next to me. I sighed.

The Great Indian Litterbugs seemed to smirk at me. I stayed meekly in my corner, never daring to love another wrapper again.


  1. And the poor dustbin remained unused... I am sure this is the state of many dustbins around the country.
    Courtesy: Great Indian Litterbug


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