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Kovind launches ‘Swachhta hi Seva’ campaign from Ishwariganj village of UP
Kanpur, September 15, 2017
President Ram Nath Kovind launched a nationwide sanitation campaign, ‘Swachhta hi Seva’, from Ishwariganj village in this district of Uttar Pradesh yesterday.
On the occasion, Mr Kovind also administered the ‘Swachhta hi Seva’ pledge to create a clean, healthy and new India. He honoured village-level champions who contributed to making Ishwariganj village ‘Open Defecation Free’.
Addressing the gathering, the President said India is fighting a decisive battle for cleanliness and hygiene. Today, all have taken an oath committing themselves to ensure public, personal and environmental hygiene, he said.
He stressed that cleanliness is not the responsibility of only sanitation personnel and government departments. It is a multi-stakeholder national movement. "Together, we should make the effort to clean our houses, public places, villages and cities. The aim is cleanliness and hygiene everywhere, with implications for health and sanitation and overall prosperity of our people," he said.
Achieving the goals of the Swachh Bharat Mission expeditiously will be an appropriate tribute to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, he added.
Among the dignitaries present on the occasion were Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Union Minister of Drinking Water & Sanitation Uma Bharati and Dr Murli Manohar Joshi, Lok Sabha MP from Kanpur.
Earlier in the day, the President visited the Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Smriti Vatika in Lucknow and paid his respects at the statue of the late social thinker and political leader Deen Dayal Upadhyaya.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has named the nationwide sanitation campaign from September 15 to October 2 as “Swachhta Hi Seva”. The third anniversary of Swachh Bharat Mission falls on October 2, the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
The drive is being coordinated by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, the convening Ministry for the Swachh Bharat Mission.
Swachhta Hi Seva campaign will see a large-scale mobilisation of people from all walks of life to undertake ‘shramdaan’ for cleanliness and construction of toilets and to make their environments free from open defecation.
It also involves targeted cleaning of public and tourist places. The participation will involve everyone from the common citizen to Union Ministers, Governors, Chief Ministers, legislators, celebrities and top officials.
Reaching out to the poor and marginalised and providing them with sustainable sanitation services would be the hallmark of this campaign.
The Ministry has identified special dates during the campaign period. It includes three Sundays, 17th, 24th September and 1st October when people will be mobilised for large-scale shramdaan for toilet construction, cleaning of public places, bus stands, school and colleges, statues, hospitals and ponds in rural and urban areas. A special cleanliness drive is planned in 15 identified tourist places on October 1.
Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, is scheduled to visit a village in Karnataka on September 17, which is being celebrated as “Seva Diwas” and offer shramdaan for toilet construction and general cleanliness.
On Seva Diwas, September 17, Doordarshan has organised a World TV Premiere of “Toilet: Ek Prem Katha”, a film that has an overwhelming message about access and usage of toilets at 11 am.
At the culminating event of the fortnight on October 2 Gandhi Jayanti, which is also the Swachh Bharat Diwas, national awards for essays, films and paintings, and other Swachh Bharat awards will be presented to Swachhta champions from across the country and all walks of life.