Swedish King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia are in India for their third visit to the nation and have been winning hearts online. First, the royal couple took social media by storm as they chose to fly by a commercial flight and carried their own bags at the airport. On Thursday, they helped clean Mumbai’s Versova beach of garbage and their photos are going viral on social media.
The royal couple joined a cleanup drive with volunteers and lawyer Afroz Shah, who was awarded UN Environment’s Champion of the Earth award in 2016 for leading efforts to cleanup Versova beach. Afroz’s efforts have been credited with bringing back some marine life to the beach again.
Calling the royals’ initiative a “historic moment for Mumbai”, Shah shared photos from their cleanliness drive. “Commoners, Royals, young leaders, Our @mybmc @MumbaiPolice working hard to #BeatPlasticPollution and to protect whales, turtles, dolphins etc,” he tweeted.
The Royals from Sweden – King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia – clean the beach with us.
Historic moment for mumbai.
— Afroz shah (@AfrozShah1) December 4, 2019
The royal couple joined Shah and other volunteers to clear plastic and other waste from the seashore.
Their Majesties visited Versova Beach & participated, under the guidance of @AfrozShah1 in a beach clean-up activity. Their Majesties also got the opportunity to interact with some volunteers working with the clean-up activity. #swedenindiasambandh #swedeninindia #swedeninmumbai pic.twitter.com/ksmwbi5iLB
— Sweden in Mumbai (@SwedeninMumbai) December 4, 2019
As the photos of the Swedish King and Queen went viral, people praised them for their work. Many also praised Shah for his efforts and continuous dedication to the great cause.
People also pointed out that it was sad thing that people from abroad are willing to clean Indian beaches, but the nation’s citizens don’t care enough.
So happy to see State visits now focussing on one of the most important issues for our planet: the environment! https://t.co/4J5RsJkupB
— Aaditya Thackeray (@AUThackeray) December 4, 2019
Amazing … how inclusive this beautiful movement has been . https://t.co/iGTxteNNYr
— Onir (@IamOnir) December 4, 2019
Great work.. The Royals… Not only think about humans but also about other species..
— Nothingness69 (@Nothingness692) December 4, 2019
What an amazing experience, first time versova beach has witnessed the Royals working to protect Marine Species.@AfrozShah1 our Hero Hindustani we bow down to you for making it possible.
First time we witnessed King and Queen wearing gloves and working instead talking.
— Shah Santosh (@ShahSantosh8) December 4, 2019
When we say 1 Man Army, we think of Afroz Bhai.. Motivation for people who think main akele kya kar sakta hu..
Akele aap dunia badal sakte ho, try to karo
— Saad A. Shamsi || سعد الشمسي (@saadshamsi_) December 4, 2019
Congratulations to @AfrozShah1 and all the Versova Beach volunteers for recieving this well deserved recognition by the King and Queen of Sweden. Keep up the good work and keep motivating people at home and abroad with your inspiring work. Well done @SwedeninIndia #SwachhBharat https://t.co/nmdvLYe53x
— deepak gogoi (@dgog61) December 4, 2019
Swedes are sweet for a reason! 😍 https://t.co/7pXBwc2zWt
— Sivasai Reddy (@sivasaireddy_19) December 4, 2019
arent we ashamed as a nation that heads of foreign countries have to give us lessons in cleanliness 🙈 https://t.co/9JwoyjnUWm
— Bobbeeta Sharma (@bobbeeta) December 4, 2019
Abe iska Kya Matlab hai be…😂😂😂
Mumbai itni gandi hai ki dusre desh ke raja aake safai Kar rahe hai https://t.co/3Uf5kaTFkt
— मोर (@13MMGM) December 4, 2019
Speaking in Mumbai later, the Swedish king said that climate change is a very important issue for his country, adding that solutions can be “difficult” politically. He said it would be good if specific industries worked on improving their functioning to make themselves more sustainable, PTI reported. He specifically mentioned the shipping sector, which he said can improve on fuel economy and adopt alternative sources of energy.