Prez calls for more social workers to rid untouchability

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New Delhi, Jul 26 (UNI) President Pratibha Patil has urged social organisations to work for eliminating social evils such as child marriage, dowry and addiction to liquor by the menfolk which were still existing in society saying there was a need to have more social workers in this area.

She made these comments when a group of disadvantaged women who are members of Nai Disha of Alwar called on her after a highly-feted visit to New York, at Rashtrapati Bhavan here on their return from New York where they attended the event Mission Sanitation.

The emancipated women scavengers, attended the special session besides staging catwalk with prominent models before the representatives of more than 150 countries at UN headquarters in New York, recently.

Thanking the social organisation Sulabh International and Nai Disha, the President said the issue of untouchability was close to Gandhiji's heart and he wanted the stain to be removed from society.

Ms Patil said the evil of untouchability created divisions in society and hampered socially inclusive growth.

Lauding the Alwar model of Nai Disha, she said it was an example as it has created a ray of hope for others. She thanked Dr Bindeshwar Pathak, the founder of Sulabh International, for bringing about a mental revolution which had given socially disadvantaged groups self-esteem and confidence. It was only when of such work brings success, then it can be said Mahatma Gandhi's dream has come true. The efforts of social organisations such as Sulabh are creating new history, Ms Patil added.

Usha Chaumar, the elected president of the Sulabh Sanitation Mission Foundation, who was crowned at the New York show was also present. Many of the women narrated their experiences about life as scavangers and also about their journey and stay in New York.

The trip, which has proved life changing, has given them experience and confidence to move ahead with their lives.

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