Swachh Bharat Awards presented on Gandhi Jayanti
On the third anniversary of the Swachh Bharat Mission, the Swachh Bharat Diwas and the conclusion of Swachhata Hi Seva fortnight, Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave away the Swachh Bharat National Awards to the winners of essay, film and painting competitions organised as part of Swachh Sankalp Se Swachh Siddhi.
The event, organised by Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation (MDWS) in New Delhi, marked the culmination of a national campaign — Swachhata Hi Seva that the MDWS had organised in response to the clarion call given by the PM to the citizens of India to contribute to improvement of sanitation status in the country.
Speaking on the occasion, PM Modi spoke about overcoming the challenges on the way of creating a Swachh Bharat with jan bhagidari, people’s participation. He said that swachhata cannot be realised even if all political leaders in history came together for it — it can only be realised when 125 crore Indians come together for it. He said the successes achieved in the mission so far have not been an accomplishment of the Government but of the people of India who have made this dream of Swachh Bharat their own.
The Prime Minister spoke about the criticisms of the mission that claim toilets are not being used. He said it is a fact that such things happen and that he has experienced this personally. However, he said that it needs to also be highlighted that people’s participation and the personal responsibility of the concerned household is critical to avoid such instances. He added that children and youth are the best ambassadors and congratulated the work done by all the children and youngsters across the country who participated in the Swachh Sankalp Se Swachh Siddhi competitions for leading a thought revolution for swachhata.
PM Modi spoke about the role played by women in maintaining swachhata in the household, the need for all members of the family to support them in this task by playing their role. He also shared the results a study done by UNICEF that has revealed that a poor family bears Rs 50,000 of additional and avoidable burden per year in terms of health costs due to poor sanitation.
Earlier, the PM inaugurated a multimedia exhibition put at the venue which demonstrated various aspects of the Swachhata Hi Seva campaign and the Swachh Bharat Mission progress in the country.