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I would say: Mahatma Gandhi,

And you people will say: Long Live, Long Live.

Mahatma Gandhi…Long live, Long live.

Mahatma Gandhi…Long live, Long live.

Mahatma Gandhi…Long live, Long live.

Swachchagrahi brothers and sisters from all corners of the country who are present here on this sacred land of Champaran; I bow down to all the respected people, to all the loved ones. Everyone knows that Bapu started his movement of passive resistance from this sacred land of Champaran. And we got this powerful weapon in the form of passive resistance to get freedom from the British. A century after the Satyagrah movement has passed, but it is still effective even after that. And for how many more years it will remain effective? Modern time demands that we move from Satyagrah to Swachchagrah.

Mahatma Gandhi had started his campaign for cleanliness from BadahwaLakhansen of Champaran at the time Champaran movement. Today, we are taking forward the cleanliness campaign of Bapu by moving from Satyagrah to Swachchagrah. RauaSamankeSojhaBani.

ShrimanSatpal Malik Ji, the governor of Bihar present on the dais; popular chief minister of the state ShrimanNitish Kumar Ji, my colleague in the council of minister Ravi Shankar Prasad Ji, Ram Vilas Paswan Ji, Sushri Uma Bharti Ji, Radha Mohan Singh Ji, Giriraj Singh Ji, Shri Ram Kripal Yadav Ji, Shri S. S. Ahaluwalia Ji, Shri Ashwini Kumar Chaube Ji, the deputy chief minister of Bihar Shriman Sushil Kumar Modi Ji, member of the council of minister of the state Shri Shravan Kumar Ji, Shri Vinod Narayan Jha Ji, Shri Pramod Kumar Ji and thousands of Satyagrahis present here and all the people connected with this programme through video conference, ladies and gentlemen,

Those who say that history does not repeat itself they can come here and see for themselves that how the 100 years old history is still present here before us. In a way the Swachchagrahiswho are sitting here before me they are the ones who have a part of the ideals of Gandhi, ideas and deeds of Gandhi alive inside them.

I bow down to that part of Mahatma Gandhi present in all those Swachchagrahis. The world had witnessed the similar image of the people’s movement hundred years ago on this sacred land of Champaran and today once again the world has been remembering the holyBapuafter having seen this visual.

Hundred years ago, people from all over the country had come to Champaran. They had worked under the leadership of Gandhi Ji by visiting lane by lane. Today, 100 years after that, the people from different corners of the country have worked hard, worked day and night by working shoulder to shoulder with the enthusiastic and young Swachchagrahis. Today, in this massive crowd, someone is Kasturba, someone is Raj Kumar Shukla, someone is Gorakh Prasad, someone is Sheikh Gulab, someone is Lomraj Singh, someone is Harivansh Rai, someone is Sheetal Rai, someone is Bin Muhammad Munees, someone is Doctor RajendraBabu, someone is DhartidharBabu and someone is Ram Navami Babu and someone is JP Kriplani Ji.

Today’s Swachchagrah is providing a new direction to the millions and millions of people of the country as hundred years ago the Satyagrah had provided a new direction to such great people. On to Champaran;today, thousands of Swachchagrahis have gathered here from different corners of the country by following this slogan. I bow down to your enthusiasm, your vigor, your energy and your eagerness to work for the country and the desires of the people of Bihar.

Before coming on dais, I have also visited an exhibition on cleanliness. New technologies, new industries have been explained in detail in this exhibition. This is also the time for completion of those programmes which have been organised on the occasion of completion of 100 years of Champaran Satyagrah. However, for us it is more of an occasion to begin urging people even more for cleanliness rather than the culmination of the programmes.

Brothers and sisters, this is the same Bihar which has shown the path to the country on three very difficult occasions during the last 100 years. When the country was under the shackles of slavery then Bihar had developed Mohan Das Karam Chand Gandhi a great soul; it had made him the father.

After the independence, when millions and millions of farmers faced the threat of being deprived of the land then Vinoba Ji started the movement to donate land. And third time when the democracy in the country was threatened then the hero from this land Babu Jay Prakash answered the call and saved the democracy.

I’m extremely proud that the people of Bihar have once again demonstrated and established their leadership capabilities. I’m aware that some people might question that Modi Ji is talking like this despite the situation of cleanliness in Bihar. There is a reason behind that. The work done by Bihar in the last sometimeunder the leadership of Nitish Ji and Sushil Modi Ji has boosted everybody’s morale.

Friends, Bihar was the only state in the country where coverage of cleanliness was less than 50 per cent. But today our secretary Mr. Parmeshwar Ji has told me that Bihar was able to breach this barrier after a week longSwachchagrahAbhiyan (cleanliness mission). In the last one week alone, Bihar has completed the work of construction of 8 lakh 50 thousand toilets. And this speed and progress is not ordinary. These data proves that very soon Bihar will be able to expand the coverage of cleanliness and become at par with the national average.

I sincerely congratulate the people of Bihar, to every Cleanliness Warrior and to the government of Bihar for this extremely challenging effort, for this initiative and for its leadership.

Just a while ago, I also got the opportunity to honor a few Swachchagrahi colleagues (cleanliness warriors). I appreciate the efforts made by them, I convey my best wishes. And I have noticed that the number of women is higher among those who have wholeheartedly participated in this thing. Our mothers and sisters very well know the importance of cleanliness. And today I’ve not got the opportunity as an individual but I strongly feel that and I would like to go beyond the administrative limitations to discuss this thing.

The officers working for the government remains anonymous, their names, their work don’t get any recognition. They never come in the picture. However, there are certain things that I feel like to share.

Today, our secretary in the Government of India Mr. Parmeshwar Ji Aiyyar; whether he is present here? He must be sitting below the dais; he has been looking after this project. He had gone to the US by leaving the job of IAS. He was leading a comfortable life in the USA. After formation of our government, we made an appeal, we appealed to a lot of people. And I’m glad that he has come back to India by giving up that glamorous life. He had been an IAS officer for years and then he had left the job. You have just seen him on television, he was just shown on TV channels. TV channels have focused their cameras on him just a while ago, please once again turn your cameras towards him. Yes. It’s him. He again came back and I inducted him in the government and assigned this responsibility to him.

He himself cleans toilets by going from place to place. And today if I have colleagues like Parmeshwar Ji, if there are thousands of cleanliness warriors who have come from all the corners of the country then my belief is strengthened that we will be able to realise the dreams of Bapu Ji when we will celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of him.

During the earlier period, we used to hear that the God has thousands of hands. That the God has thousands of hands, we still hear and read this kind of things. But we have never heard of a Prime Minister with thousands of hands. But given the thousands of cleanliness warriors sitting before me, I would like to say with all the humility that the Prime Minister of the country too has become a person with thousands of hands.

Your commitment, your hard work, your support; these cleanliness warriors who left their villages to do the work of cleaning in the lanes of Bihar while still being dedicated to cleanliness in their own areas, these Swachchagrahis have been providing a new momentum, new energy and a new life to the Bapu’s movement of moving from passive resistance to cleanliness campaign; and therefore I once again congratulate to all of you.

Friends, be it the cleanliness mission or be it the fight against black money and corruption or be it development of facilities related to common man, the central government has been walking shoulder to shoulder with Nitish Ji and his team. For development of Bihar, for social and economic empowerment of the people of the state, the policies and strategies of both central government and Bihar government are complimentary to each other.

From this platform, I have got the opportunity to either publicly dedicate or lay the foundation stones for the schemes worth more than Rs. 6,600 crore related to Bihar’s development. Be it water or railways or be it roads or petroleum; several such schemes are going to prove important for Bihar and especially for Champaran. And if we see that in a way these schemes are also related to cleanliness and protection of environment.

Brothers and sisters, the restoration of Motihari lake is also among those projects the foundation stones for which are being laid today. Our Motihari district is being named after that lake, the lake that has been part of the history of Bihar, the restoration work of that lake is being started today. When Gandhi was here in Champaran for the Satyagrah then he had said about this lake that the lake’s view in the evening gives happiness. This city is beautiful because of this lake. But the beauty of the Moti Lake, which was experienced by Gandhi Ji, has been slowly fading away with the passage of time.

I’m aware that thewise citizens of this place have made every possible contribution to protect the lake. The awareness campaign had been run from social media to roads. By joining into the efforts made by you people, not only the lake will be restored but the facilities like Lake Fun will also be developed for tourists.

Brothers and sisters, cleanliness is also linked to water. The foundation stone for a water supply scheme with a cost of nearly Rs. 100 crore has been laid under the Amrit Scheme so that Betia doesn’t have to struggle for clean water. This is directly going to benefit more than 1.5 lakh people.

One more effort made by us is related to cleaning of the life giving mother Ganges. The government has been working with the resolve to clean the Ganga from Gangotri to up to Ganga Sagar. Bihar is an important part of this mission. Eleven projects worth more than Rs. 3,000 crore have now been approved in Bihar to stop the drainage of polluted waters of homes and factories. There is a plan to lay 1,100 kilometer long civil pipeline with that money. And the foundation stones for four projects out of these have been laid today.

The work has been taking place on those four projects the foundation stones for which were laid when I had visitedMokama last year. The work on the remaining projects will be started very soon. The villages located on the banks of the river Ganges have been declared free from open defecation on priority basis.

In five states, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal, from where Ganga Ji flows through, several villages located on the banks of Ganga have succeeded in this mission. Waste management schemes have been implemented in those villages that are located on the banks of river Ganga so that the waste generated in the village is not thrown in the river. I’m hopeful that the banks of Ganga will be soon free from open defecation.

Sometime back a ‘Waste Festival’ was celebrated in Banaras. I would urge the people of the cities located on the banks of Ganga that you should celebrate Waste Festivals and teach people how the waste can be used for creating wealth. And you will be surprised to know what an important work can be done through the waste.

Brothers and sisters,

Clean fuel is also a part of cleanliness drive. The government has been fully dedicated to set every poor mother and sister free from poisonous smoke through the Ujjawala scheme. More than 3.5 crore families in the country have been provided a free gas connection so far. Nearly 50 lakh women, 50 lakh families of Bihar have also benefitted under the scheme.

Friends, but due to the priority given to clean fuel and due to the success of Ujjawala scheme the demand for the gas cylinders has been rising. Today the foundations for establishing LPG plants in Motihari and Sagoli have been laid so that the people of Champaran and nearby areas do not face problem in getting gas cylinders. Nearly 90,000 cylinders will be refilled in a day after these plants start working.

In addition to this, in Motihari, foundation stone has been laid for a petroleum-oil lube terminal. Once it is ready then not only it will meet the requirement of the petrol and diesel of Champaran and nearby districts but it will also help in streamlining the supply to the Nepal as well.

Brothers and sisters,

These projects are the expansion of that vision of the central government under which the eastern India has been considered the growth engine for the country. The kind of work to develop the infrastructure from eastern Uttar Pradesh to Bihar, to West Bengal and then up to Odisha and also in the states of North East has been done by our government, it is such that has never been done earlier.

Nitish Ji too is a witness to this thing that how the schemes have been formulated by taking into account the needs of eastern India including Bihar. New projects have been started. Especially, our government has been laying a lot of emphasis on improving connectivity in these areas.

Given the requirements of the 21st century, the work on the development of all these things like highways, waterways, i-ways in these areas has been taking place at a fast speed. Today, the foundation stones for national highway projects worth nearly Rs. 900 crore have been laid. Aurangabad to Chaurdah, which is a four lane section, today, the work on making it six lane has started. This project will benefit the people from both Bihar and Jharkhand.

Similarly, the foundation stones for two railway projects for Champaran have been laid. The railway track between Muzaffarnagar to Sagoli and Sagoli to Balmiki Nagar will be converted into double line. This will not only benefit the people of Champaran but it will also make the travel and tradeof the people from Uttar Pradesh to Nepal easier.

Friends, I got the opportunity to inaugurate a new train on the occasion of centenary of Champaran movement. This train will run between Katihar to Old Delhi. The government has specially named it Champaran Humsafar Express. This train which is equipped with modern amenities will be extremely helpful for you people for travelling to and from Delhi.

Brothers and sisters,

Today, the first phase of an electric locomotive factory in Madhepura has been dedicated to the public. This factory is important for two reasons. First, it’s an excellent example of Make in India. Second, it is becoming a big source of employment in this region. Indian railways have been working on this project in collaboration with a French company. This factory will manufacture powerful engines. I just got the opportunity to show the green flag to a 12,000 horse power engine produced in this modern factory.

Friends, there are very few countries in the world that use such a powerful engine for carrying goods. The average speed of goods trains in India will be more than doubled because of these engines.

There is one more reason because of that I would like explain to you people about this project in detail.

Brothers and sisters, this project was approved in 2007, but the files of this project did not receive any power even 8 years after it was sanctioned and the files were rotting. Three year ago, NDA government started work on this project and now the first phase has already been completed.

Ayushman Bharat: In our country, for the poor people, another important thing after cleanliness is health. If someone falls sick in the poorest of the poor family then that family will get up to Rs. five lakh in a year for the treatment of the disease with the help government and this insurance scheme. Now the family will not face hurdles in the treatment of the diseases due to lack of money. Ayushman Bharat, the government of India is going to implement this new scheme.

My government has certain way of doing things. Now the tendency of putting brakes, putting things on the back burner and of misdirection has beenput to an end. The work culture of keeping the files on holdhas ended. The government has been completing its every mission, its every resolve with the support from the public.

But those people who are not able to accept these changes are facing problems because of this. They are not able to tolerate the empowerment of poor people. They feel that if the poor person becomes strong then they will not be able to tell the lies, then they will not be able to misguide him. That is why hurdles have been created in the functioning of the government from road to parliament.

Friends, you otherwise have a government which has been trying to create amity among people. On the other hand some opponents have been trying to create discord among the people.

Friends, I would like to specially praise the able administration and patience of Nitish Ji. The way he has been fighting against the corrupt and anti-social forces of Bihar that is not easy. The central government fully supports his cleanliness campaign against corruption, fully supports his efforts to bring about social changes.

NDA government has been doing the work in a time bound manner with a solemn resolve by following the formula of Sabka Sath – Sabka Vikas.Previous governments might not have understood the importance of completing the work in a time bound manner but Gandhi Ji always used to stress upon timely completion of work in addition to Satyagrah and Swachchagrah. Gandhi Ji always kept a pocket watch with him. And he also used to say this thing: ‘when you can’t waste a grain of rice or a piece of paper then you must not waste a single minute’. This is not our time, this time belongs to the nation and it must be utilised for the country.

1.25 billion Indians have been working in the mission mode by leading their lives as per this spirit of Gandhi Ji. It is their insistence on cleanliness because of that the coverage of cleanliness which was 40% in 2014 has now expanded to over 80%. It means that more cleanliness has been achieved during the tenure of this government than what was achieved in 67 years after the independence.

Friends, in the last three and a half years more than 350 districts and more than 3.5 lakh villages of the country have declared themselves free from open defecation. Nearly 7 crore toilets have been constructed in the country in the last three and a half years. This is due to the will power of the people because of that in the last one week alone, from 4th April onwards, when the Satyagrah to Swachchagrah Week was celebrated; nearly 26 lakh toilets were constructed in Bihar, UP, Odisha and Jammu & Kashmir. These are the four states which have resolved that they will expand the coverage of cleanliness at a much faster speed.

Friends, you people are very well aware that how the Clean India Mission has changed the lives of millions and millions of women of the country. The women are getting all three things – dignity, safety and health – because of the construction of a toilet. I’ve been told that now people in Bihar have also started calling toilets as Izzatghars (the place of honor). Construction of toilets has also ended a huge social imbalance. It’s also becoming the reason for economic and social empowerment.

Last year, it was reported in a study of United Nations that on an average Rs. 50,000 of those families have been saved in a year that have a toilet in the house. Otherwise the same amount is being spent on the treatment of diseases, on visiting hospitals and due to absence from work.

As per a study conducted by another international agency, it has been revealed that for the kids of those villages which have been declared free from open defecation,the incidence of suffering from diarrhea has come down and their mental and physical development is also taking place in a proper manner. Because now the kids are falling sick less frequently, they have been taking leaves from schools less frequently. Therefore those villages that have declared themselves free from open defecation have also registered improvement in the school results.

Friends, it is a case study for the top universities of the world the way Clean India Mission has reached every nook and corner of the country by becoming the people’s movement. I feel that this kind of people’s movement to change the human behaviour has not taken place in any other country in the 21st century until now. India has certainly been changing. The change is taking place in habits and behaviour.

However, now every Swachchagrahi present here in Gandhi Maidan, everyone one from the youngest kid of the country to the oldest person, will have to face the real challenge. This challenge is about maintaining the insistence on cleanliness from roads to railway stations and bus stations, in front of the house and shop, in front of schools and colleges, in markets and in lanes and, in corners and in the locality. Clean India Mission will not be complete unless every single person of the country will make effort for cleanliness at his own level. Clean India Mission will not be completed unless cleanliness becomes part of life of every single person of the country. That is why we will be able to complete the Clean India Mission in 2019 to the extent we will insist on the cleanliness. And we will be able to pay our similarly emotional tribute to the Holy Bapu on the second of October the next year.

Friends, Gandhi Ji had placed farmers, laborers, teachers, lawyers, doctors, engineers and everyone in the same line here in Champaran. Only then Satyagrah had succeeded. As a Swachchagrahi (cleanliness warriors) our roles should be similar to that. It should be our constant endeavor that this message of cleanliness should reach to every person and every section of the society.

And that is why I will urge upon every Swchchagrahi present here that you should give the maximum publicity to the things mentioned in the booklet that has been given to you. The more you make the people aware, the more this Clean India Mission will succeed. The government has also been making this effort that there should be at least one Cleanliness Champion in every village of the country. More than 6.5 lakh Cleanliness Champions have been working on cleanliness to make it a part of the daily lives of people in every corner of the country, they will work on the mission to make it a part of people’s lives.

The work to provide housing to poor in the country has been progressing at a rapid pace under the Prime Minister’s AvasYojana. I’m hopeful that Bihar will also carry out the work to provide housing to the poor at the same speed at which it has taken upon the work of construction of toilets.

All of us can do one more thing: all the anniversaries that will fall between today and the 2nd of October the next year, birth or death anniversary or any festival then we should specially motivate people on that occasion for the Clean India Mission. For example, tomorrow on the 11th April, it is the birth anniversary of great social reformer JyotibaPhule Ji; Baba SahebAmbedkar’s birth anniversary is falling on the 14th of April. In addition to talking about that great soul on these special days, a request to people can also be made regarding the cleanliness.

Even otherwise, let me tell you about your knowledge that the central government is going to start Gram Swaraj Abhiyan from 14th of April. Under this movement, all our MPs, MLAs, elected representatives, be they are in a local village body or in a municipal council or city council, they all should associate themselves with some or some other work related to the Clean India Mission in their areas. Please persuade others, make request to people by visiting door to door that they should make effort to keep the nearby areas clean and hygienic.

Brothers and sisters,

The future generations will remember your contribution in nation building. Every Satyagrahi has been working towards building a healthy, hygienic and prosperous nation. When Champaran Satyagrah was taking place then we were not there to participate in it, we were not even born. No one of us was there in that movement. However, we can work day and night to make the Champaran Swachchagrah a success.

I know that this task requires extreme patience. And I also know this thing that you Swachchagrahis (cleanliness warriors) have this kind of burning desire to bring about a change in the country that you people constantly keep working in your efforts. Champaran Swachchagrah has become the national song for today’s youth which gives them the power to understand the challenges, to overcome them and to fight and not to stop till the victory has been achieved. This movement by the people also provides the guidance for the future of India.

I’m totally confident that our insistence on cleanliness will write a new chapter of a clean, beautiful and prosperous new India. I convey my best wishes to all the Swachchagrahis participating in this grand function here. I would also like to say that India will complete 75 years of its independence in 2022. And we have been celebrating the 150th anniversary of Gandhi Ji from the second of October 2018 to the second of October 2019. In order to realise the dream of a New India, we have to eradicate those social evils, those vices from our society that have been damaging the country, that have been weakening it. We have to make an India that is free from filth, free from corruption. We have to liberate our country from these feelings of casteism, free from the feelings of superiority and inferiority and of untouchability, we have to set the country free of communal tensions and this communalism.

When we will move ahead with these resolves only then we will be able to pay real tribute to the freedom fighters in 2022; we can pay real tribute to Gandhi Ji when his 150th anniversary will be in 2018-19. With these feelings, by respectfully bowing down and while congratulating the youth for doing this great service to the country, I once again appeal to all of you, to the people of the country: Mahatma Gandhi had done a lot for us, please come forward and we should also make efforts to realise one dream of Gandhi Ji - the dream of a clean India.

This work is not a government event. This programme doesn’t belong to the Prime Minister or Chief Ministers, neither it belongs to the central government or state governments. This programme belongs to 1.25 billion people of the country, it belongs to the poor people of the country, this programme is for ensuring social justice in the country and for ensuring honor for mothers and sisters. And that is why we should join this programme wholeheartedly.

With this feeling I once again honor, I once again congratulate all those Swachchagrahis and I respectfully thank all of you.

Please once again join me in saying.

I would say Mahatma Gandhi and you would say it twice: long live; long live.

Mahatma Gandhi; long live, long live.

Please say with all your strength.

Mahatma Gandhi; long live, long live.

Mahatma Gandhi; long live, long live.

Thank you very much.

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Social Media Corner 15 October 2018
October 15, 2018
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