New Delhi [India], Sept. 24 (ANI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday expressed his happiness over the widespread support for 'Swachhata Hi Seva' movement and thanked media for furthering the message of cleanliness.
Addressing his 36th edition of monthly radio programme, 'Mann Ki Baat,' Prime Minister Modi said that in just first four days of the cleanliness drive, seventy lakh people joined with more than 40,000 initiatives.
"We have organised a number of programmes, competitions, art events and a number of other things for the 'Swachhata Hi Seva' campaign. We must make 'Swachhata' a way of life. The media has to play a very important role in the 'Swachhata' campaign," Prime Minister Modi said.
Prime Minister Modi congratulated Jammu and Kashmir's 18-year-old cleanliness crusader Bilal Dar, who created a living by picking up waste from the Wular Lake in Bandipora district of north Kashmir.
He also lauded the Kashmiri youth's efforts to clean an entire lake on his own and asked the Kashmir administration to take inspiration from him.
"I congratulate 18-yr-old Bilal Dar, who has been made brand ambassador for cleanliness by Srinagar Municipal Corporation," he said.
Remembering Chandrakant Kulkarni from Maharashtra, who donated for cleanliness drive, Prime Minister Modi said that he inspired many others to contribute in Swacch Bharat Mission.
"I am delighted to see the support towards Swachhata Hi Seva movement. People are actively contributing to a Swachh Bharat.. In last month's Mann Ki Baat we undertook a pledge, decided to celebrate Swachhta Utsav for 15days ahead of Gandhi Jayanti. Children, senior citizens, men, women, cities and villages all have become a part of it," he added.
On Saturday, addressing the public meeting in Varanasi, the Prime Minister also pitched for a clean and new India and said that 'Swachhata' is their collective responsibility.
"'Swachhata' has to become 'Swabhav'. It is our collective responsibility. A cleaner India will also be a healthier India Swachhata is a difficult task to undertake. But if Modi doesn't take up the difficult tasks, then who will," the Prime Minister said.
Terming 'Swachhata' as "Puja," the Prime Minister said that cleanliness is a way to serve the poor of India, adding that no one should live in dirt and an unclean environment.
"Swachhata should be our ultimate goal. Swachhata is the responsibility of every individual and every family. The diseases that spread at a rapid rate are caused due to lack of cleanliness," he added.
He shared his thoughts with the people in the country and abroad in All India Radio's 'Mann Ki Baat' programme, which is an apolitical and interactive broadcast focusing on welfare and well-being of the people, at 11 AM today. (ANI)