Banega Swachh India Meeting and Dinner in Delhi
Global Interfaith WASH Alliance’s Co-Founder, Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswati, and Secretary-General, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji, were warmly received at a dinner meeting hosted and organized by RB, formerly known as Reckitt Benckiser and makers of popular household products Dettol and Harpic.
The Global Board of Directors of RB were present at the dinner, as was the British High Commissioner, Sir James Bevan KCMG, and Nobel Peace Prize winner and Indian children’s rights and education advocate, Shri Kailash Satyarthi.
Last year RB launched a nation-wide initiative, Banega Swacch India, in support of the government’s Swacch Bharat (Clean India) programme. Recently they launched Banega Swachh India (BSI) in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar and have an ambitious five year programme to address the urgent need of hygiene and sanitation in India. The campaign aims to create behaviour change by encouraging healthy hand washing habits and sanitation hygiene across the country. Pujya Swamiji was one of the key speakers at the recent launch of BSI in Patna and Lucknow and is part of the BSI’s Steering Committee.
Pujya Swamiji’s divine presence inspired everyone. RB was looking forward to work with the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance (GIWA) to engage and bring faith leaders together for improved WASH. They also discussed ongoing plans to partner with GIWA and the World Toilet College (WTO) to create the first World Toilet College.
The next morning the first steering committee meeting of the Banega Swachh India initiative took place in Delhi to map out the future course of action and to discuss the implementation of a nation-wide Hygiene Index.
Pujya Swamiji encouraged discussion to create concrete plans to work in the cities and towns along the banks of Mother Ganga, to start a pilot plan for sanitation and hygiene during the upcoming Kumbha Mela in Haridwar and to create the first World Toilet College, which will be utilized to train sanitation professionals.
The plans for the World Toilet College, as a gift to the nation, with the partnership of GIWA, World Toilet Organization (WTO) and RB, were announced publicly on the auspicious occasion of Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s birthday, to support and contribute significantly to his vision of a Swachh Bharat (Clean India).