New Delhi, Oct 02, 2014 01:46 PM IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said it was a national responsibility to help fulfil Mahatma Gandhi’s vision of a clean India by his 150th birth anniversary in 2019.
Launching the Swachh Bharat mission at Rajpath in New Delhi, Modi said of Gandhi`s two dreams, Quit India and Clean India, the second remained unfulfilled. The Prime Minister appreciated work done by previous governments and social, religious and cultural organisations towards cleanliness. He pointed out that the work could not be done by the government alone and hoped Swachh Bharat should become a mass movement.
Modi said according to the World Health Organisation, an average Rs 6,500 per person was lost in India due to lack of cleanliness and hygiene and the mission could make a significant impact on public health. The prime minister also emphasised the importance of building toilets.
Modi has invited nine public figures – Mridula Sinha, Sachin Tendulkar, Baba Ramdev, Shashi Tharoor, Anil Ambani, Kamal Hasan, Salman Khan, Priyanka Chopra and Team Tarak Mehta ka Oolta Chashma – to make a contribution towards Swachh Bharat. He urged people to share their contributions on social media using the hashtag #MyCleanIndia.
The prime minister congratulated the winners of the crowdsourcing contests for the logo and tagline of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan. Union Ministers Venkaiah Naidu and Nitin Gadkari also addressed the gathering after Modi.
Earlier, Modi stopped over at New Delhi’s Mandir Marg police station and picked up a broom to clean dirt.