Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Updated: 5 December, 2019 9:36 pm IST

Parameswaran Iyer, Secretary, Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, was in conversation with ThePrint’s Editor-in-Chief Shekhar Gupta at Off The Cuff in Bengaluru on Wednesday. Iyer spoke about the Swachh Bharat programme, its achievements and future objectives, as well as the Jal Jivan and Jal Shakti Abhiyan missions which aim to tackle water conservation and water supply to households across the country.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

From left: Parameswaran Iyer, Secretary, Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, who also oversees Swachh Bharat Mission and rural drinking water; Shekhar Gupta, chairman and editor-in-chief, ThePrint

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

From left: Shekhar Gupta, fashion consultant Prasad Bidapa, Parameswaran Iyer

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

S.K. Mohanka, commandant, CISF Bangalore airport, shared how his airport is contributing to Swachh Bharat and has broken the caste barrier when recruiting ground workers.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Iyer said the most important task ahead for the Narendra Modi government’s flagship Swachh Bharat Mission is to sustain the momentum achieved after five years of concerted efforts. (Full report)

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Chaya Srivatsa, founder, Guild of Women Achievers, said she represented the senior citizens and asked how the government can help them get better izzatgars.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Left to right: Radhika Ravindran, Russian interpreter and teacher Indira Jayaram and freelance writer and lawyer Mina Anand were in the front row of the audience.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Manjunath Gangadhar, founder, Smart Sustain, asked if the project for running water taps in households by 2024 can be combined with an initiative to harvest rain water on rooftops.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Iyer listed the Swachh Bharat Mission’s most important achievements, the roadmap going forward, and the steps the government is taking to enable people of the country get access to water.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Alan Ironside, Ballantine’s brand ambassador – PR India

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Meghana Girish of Maj Akshay Girish Memorial Trust complimented the government for the cleanliness at Prayagraj and Varanasi during Kumbh mela. She wanted to know the government’s plans to segregate waste materials, especially plastics.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

“Usage of toilets is high, and one of the lessons learned was that the government first focused on women for toilet use,” said Iyer. “But they realised soon that the women needed toilets and used them instantly, and it was the men they needed to target to prevent open defecation. So, campaigns like Darwaza Band led by Amitabh Bachchan targeted men. And the challenge now is to sustain it.”

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Iyer agreed for a picture with ThePrint team.

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

From left: Rahul Jacob, journalist; Priya Suresh, style and image consultant director, Poise

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Chef Abraham Jacob, partner, Recode Hospitality

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Off The Cuff with Parameswaran Iyer

Iyer recently released the Swachh Bharat Revolution book of essays, an anthology by key players and swachhagrahis across the country.

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