‘Clean environment can make Swachh Bharat mission successful’

New Delhi: Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Smriti Irani Tuesday said that the Clean India Campaign mission can be achieved only if a clean environment is provided to every child to help them become “change agents”.

She indicated that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mission of a Clean India by 2019 can only be achieved if “we provide good clean environment in schools, including functional toilets to every child, so the child becomes a change agent for a larger goal that we have set for ourselves,” a ministry statement said.

Irani was addressing a conference of private sector corporate heads on the use of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds for construction of toilets in schools as part of the Swachh Bharat Swachh Vidyalaya Campaign.

She reiterated the government’s resolve to provide toilets in every school with a separate one for girls within one year and invited participation from the corporate sector to participate in the campaign by constructing toilets and also maintaining them for some time.

Modi while delivering his maiden address on India’s 68th Independence Day had said: “Every school should build separate toilets for girls in a year so that our girl children do not leave schools.”

The conference was attended by senior officials from public sector corporations and heads of various private sector corporates across India, including Maruti Suzuki chairman R.C. Bhargava, Infosys Foundation chairperson Sudha Murthy and JK Tyres chairperson Raghupati Singhania.

While the NTPC chairperson indicated a commitment to construct 24,000 toilets,  Infosys Foundation chair blocked 109 schools in Bhubaneswar on the HRD website — which was thrown open to private sector to book schools of their interest.

“Commitments were made by TCS, Toyota Kirloskar, Bharti Foundation and Ambuja Cements for construction of toilets. The total commitments from public sector and private sector corporation is for construction of one lakh toilets,” the statement said.

Under the Swachh Bharat, Swachh Vidyalaya campaign, individuals/corporate/institutions interested in building toilet blocks will be allocated the preferred schools private or public sector companies would be welcome to take up construction of toilet blocks on their own.

A centralised online data base on construction of toilets in schools will be maintained by the department of school education and literacy, ministry of HRD.

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