The Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) aims at achieving an Open Defecation Free (ODF) nation by 2nd October 2019,a befitting tribute to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150th birth anniversary. The SBM identifies behaviour change as the primary and fundamental tool for the achievement of ODF outcomes. The year 2018 saw an increased awareness on cleanliness across India, writes Priyanka Sharma of Elets News Network (ENN).
According to data released by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, rural sanitation coverage has increased significantly from 38.7 percent at the launch of SBM(G) in 2014 to 96.88 percent as on 5th December 2018.
Swachhata Action Plan (SAP)
A first of its kind, an inter-ministerial programme for Swachhata, Swachhata Action Plan is led by all Union Ministries for the implementation of sanitation related activities. During the financial year 2017-18, 74 Ministries/Departments committed funds worth Rs. 18,154.82 crore for their SAPs. For the year 2018-19, 72 Ministries/Departments have committed Rs. 17,077.81 crore
Swachh Iconic Places (SIP)
The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation has undertaken a project focussed on cleanliness in 100 locations across the country, which are “iconic” due to their heritage, religious and/or cultural significance.
Most of these SIPs have also received financial and technical support from PSUs and corporates.
The Ministry launched the Galvanising Organic Bio-Agro Resource dhan or “GOBARdhan” scheme on 30th April 2018, at Karnal, Haryana. The scheme is aimed at keeping villages clean while increasing the income of farmers and cattle owners by promoting local entrepreneurs to convert cattle dung, and other organic resources, to biogas and organic manure.
Swachh Bharat Summer Internship 2018
MDWS, in association with the Ministry of Human Resource Development and the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, launched the ‘Swachh Bharat Summer Internship (SBSI) 2018’ aimed at engaging college students and NYKS youth with Swachhata work in villages during the summer vacation.
The SBSI engaged lakhs of educated youth across the country helped develop their skills and orientation for the sanitation sector and amplified the mass awareness aspect of Swachh Bharat Mission.
As part of the internship, candidates were required to undertake 100 hours of sanitation related activities including shramdaan, creation of sanitation infrastructure, system building, behaviour change campaigns and other IEC initiatives in and around nearby villages.