Swachhta Hi Seva: India’s Nationwide Cleanliness Drive to Fulfill Bapu’s Dream
On October 1, 2023, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the ‘Swachhta Hi Seva’ movement, a nationwide cleanliness drive to boost public participation in the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and catalyze the fulfillment of Bapu’s dream of a clean India. The movement aims at generating greater public awareness and mobilization towards Swachhta, with a special focus on plastic waste management and the welfare of Safai Mitras.
The ‘Swachhta Hi Seva’ movement is not a new initiative, but a continuation of the Swachh Bharat Mission, which was launched by the Prime Minister on October 2, 2014, on the occasion of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary. The mission has been a remarkable success story, with over 11 crore toilets built and more than 6 lakh villages declared open defecation-free (ODF) in the last seven years. The mission has also brought about a significant improvement in the health and hygiene of the people, especially women and children.
However, the Prime Minister stressed that the mission is not yet complete and there is still a lot of work to be done to achieve universal sanitation coverage and garbage-free India. He emphasized that Swachh Bharat is not just a government program, but a collective responsibility and a mass movement. He said that every citizen should take pride in keeping their surroundings clean and inspire others to do the same. He also highlighted the importance of reducing the use of single-use plastic and promoting eco-friendly alternatives. He said that plastic waste is a major threat to the environment and the health of humans and animals. He urged the people to segregate their waste at the source and dispose of it properly. He also praised the efforts of Safai Mitras, who work tirelessly to keep India clean and safe. He said that they deserve respect and dignity from society and assured them of the government’s support for their welfare.
The ‘Swachhta Hi Seva’ movement will continue till October 2, 2023, when the nation will celebrate the Swachh Bharat Diwas and pay tribute to Mahatma Gandhi on his 154th birth anniversary. The movement will also coincide with various other events and campaigns related to cleanliness and sanitation, such as ‘Hara Geela Sookha Neela’, ‘Garbage Free India’, ‘Har Patri Saaf Sutri’, etc. The movement will involve various stakeholders, such as central and state governments, local bodies, NGOs, corporations, media, celebrities, schools, colleges, etc. The movement will also showcase the achievements and best practices of the Swachh Bharat Mission through various platforms and mediums.
The ‘Swachhta Hi Seva’ movement is an opportunity for all Indians to join hands and make a difference in their own way. It is a chance to honor the legacy of Mahatma Gandhi, who believed that cleanliness is next to godliness. It is a call to action to make India a clean and beautiful country that we can all be proud of.