Bhopal, April 30: Decades before India officially decided to make cleanliness a virtue by announcing Prime Minister Narendra Modi's pet project Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India Mission) in 2014, a lawyer from Madhya Pradesh's Gwalior decided to clean his neighbourhood. Since the last 40 years, every morning Rajendra Sharma has been religiously sweeping his neighbourhood.
With a broom and a garbage bin in his hand, every morning Sharma sweeps the roads in his neighbourhood to keep them spick and span. His commitment towards having a clean environment has been hailed by none other than President Ram Nath Kovind.
A tweet in Hindi posted by the official Twitter handle of the President stated that the role of civilians in ensuring cleanliness is huge. The tweet added that Gwalior resident Sharmaji has been cleaning his neighbourhood streets for the last 40 years. "He is a lawyer by profession. Because of his effort, no one in his neighbourhood throws garbage on roads," stated the tweet.
स्वच्छता सुनिश्चित करने में नागरिकों का योगदान बहुत महत्वपूर्ण है। ग्वालियर के निवासी श्री राजेंद्र शर्मा जी 40 सालों से अपनी गली में खुद ही सफाई करते आ रहे हैं। वे पेशे से वकील हैं। उनके इस प्रयास की वजह से मोहल्ले वाले भी अब गली में कचरा नहीं फेंकते हैं — राष्ट्रपति कोविन्द pic.twitter.com/OJDk2RxBw2— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) April 29, 2018
On Sunday, PM Modi asked youngsters to join the "Swachh Bharat Summer Internship 2018" launched by his government and announced incentives, including credit point by the UGC, for participants, saying it is an opportunity for those who want to make a change in society.
In his monthly Mann ki Baat broadcast, Modi also pitched for water conservation, saying it should be everyone's responsibility and asserted that his government has spent Rs 32,000 crore annually outside the MNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) budget and 150 lakh acre land have benefitted from it in the last three years.
Giving a call to students to join the Swachh Bharat campaign during their summer vacation, he said three ministries of his government have launched an internship programme and it is an opportunity for those who want to work for society, contribute positively and bring about a change.
"The best of the interns who have strived in schools and colleges with excellent work will be rewarded with recognition at the national level. Not just that, those interns who accomplish their tasks well will be awarded two credit points each by the UGC," Modi said.