Prime Minister Narendra Modi complimented NDTV for its role in creating awareness on cleanliness today, referring to the fifth edition of the media group's Banega Swachh India Cleanathon. The praise comes on a day the country is observing Mahatma Gandhi's 149th birth anniversary by organising clean-up drives and spreading the word on good hygiene.
The NDTV-led cleanliness drive has helped build toilets in rural areas, conduct clean-up drives and spread awareness on sanitation, health and hygiene in tandem with the Modi government's flagship Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan.
Banega Swachh India Cleanathon is spearheaded by campaign ambassador Amitabh Bachchan and attended by a number of fellow-celebrities.
At the Mahatma Gandhi International Sanitation Convention held earlier today, PM Modi had unveiled the "Four P Formula" -- comprising political leadership, public funding, partnerships and people's participation -- to make the world a cleaner place to live in. The compliment for NDTV came in the evening.
"I congratulate team @ndtv for their notable efforts to further awareness on Swachhata. They have brought people from all walks of life on their platform to further discussions on ways to make India cleaner," PM Modi tweeted at 5.25 pm.
I congratulate team @ndtv for their notable efforts to further awareness on Swachhata. They have brought people from all walks of life on their platform to further discussions on ways to make India cleaner. https://t.co/zX1kzZevud- Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 2, 2018
The government reports significant progress on the cleanliness front over the last four years. PM Modi claimed at the sanitation convention that the Swachh Bharat Mission has brought about a major change in public behavior, and raised rural sanitation levels to 94 per cent from 38 per cent in 2014. "Five lakh villages and 25 states have become open defecation free," he said.
Several politicians were seen sweeping roads and surrounding areas to mark Gandhi Jayanti today. A video of Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy stepping into an open drain and cleaning it with a spade went viral on the social media this morning.
The Modi government had launched the Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, its flagship scheme to promote cleanliness and hygiene in the country, on Gandhi Jayanti in 2014. The mission's objective is to declare India open defecation free by October 2, 2019, when the nation observes the Father of the Nation's 150th birth anniversary.
Last month, the Prime Minister inaugurated the 'Swachhata Hi Seva' movement to encourage public participation in the cleanliness mission.