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PM Modi writes to media houses to participate in ‘clean India movement’

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In letter to ThePrint, Modi asks Swachhata be placed ‘at the top of national consciousness’, which will help nation move along path to a clean India.

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has personally requested top media organisations in the country to leverage their platforms to showcase the achievements of the “Swachhata Revolution” on the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

In a personalised letter written to ThePrint’s editor-in-chief Shekhar Gupta, Modi said: “I urge ThePrint family to leverage your platform and place Swachhata at the top of national consciousness.” This, he said, “would help the nation move further along the path to a clean India”.

“As a tribute to Bapu”, the government is all set to celebrate the four-year anniversary of the Swachh Bharat Mission by organising ‘Swachhata Hi Seva 2018’ from 15 September to 2 October.

Also read: The ‘c’ in Swachh Bharat is caste and Modi needs to address it

On 15 September, “Crores of people will join the ‘Swachhata Hi Seva Movement’ across India,” Modi has written. “Those working to strengthen Swachh Bharat Mission will share their stories and I will also interact with citizens, before the Swachhata activities commence.”

The PM has reached out to several eminent persons and organisations to participate in the movement, Dr Hiren Joshi, Officer on Special Duty (IT) to the PM, told ThePrint.

“He was very keen to send personalised letters to everyone…So no two letters will be the same,” he added. “He has requested top persons in different domains to come on board.”

Highlighting the achievements of the Swachh Bharat Mission, the Prime Minister said in his letter: “More than 90 per cent Indians have access to a toilet, as compared to less than 40 per cent in 2014. Over 4.5 lakh villages, 430 districts, 2800 cities/towns, and 19 states and UTs have been declared open defecation free.”

Also read: Swachh Bharat has made little difference, govt should factor in criticism

One of the key objectives of the Swachh Bharat Mission launched by the Prime Minister months after being elected was to make the country open-defecation free by 2 October 2019 — which will mark the five-year anniversary of the mission.

Putting the emphasis on ensuring access to toilets, especially for women, the letter says: “India is reaching a stage where no woman will have to go through the indignity of lacking access to safe sanitation and our children will be healthier.”

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