I grew up on baseball fields. I can handle spit. I can handle chew and dip. But this story is disgusting.
Apparently Indians in Kolkata are corroding the Howrah Bridge pillars with their spit from chewing gutkha. Dude. Find a spittoon or something. Or, just spit in the river. Geez.
It was first reported in 2010 that the pillars of Kolkata’s landmark Howrah bridge were being used as spittoons by pedestrians who chewed gutkha – a tobacco product popular with millions in India.
Engineers who surveyed the cantilever structure then reported that the struts supporting the girders of the bridge had already lost half of their metal casing: The corrosion was apparently caused by acids in the gutkha.
Soon the Lions Club of Howrah launched a “Save Howrah Bridge from Spit” campaign urging people not to spit on the bridge.
The campaign spread across the city of Kolkata, where reddish-brown gutkha stains are visible almost everywhere – pavements, streets, office staircases, business houses, and residential complexes. Prominent citizens of Kolkata joined the campaign in an effort to rid the city of the ugly stains.