Today, in an event organised in Uttarakhand at village Veerpur Khurd on the bank of River Ganga, Union Minister for Drinking Water and Sanitation, Narendra Singh Tomar commissioned two Ganga Grams in the presence of various faith leaders led by Swami Chidanand Saraswati, co-founder of GIWA (Global Interfaith WASH Alliance). Two villages in the bank of River Ganga, Veerpur Khurd in Dehradun and Mala in Pauri Garhwal have been taken by the Ministry to make them model Ganga villages, in collaboration with GIWA.The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, in collaboration with State governments, has the mandate to make villages on the bank of River Ganga open Defecation free (ODF). 4270 villages of 4515 Ganga villages have been declared ODF. These two villages, Mala and Veerpur Khurd have also been declared ODF.Now, with the help of various stakeholders, these two villages will be provided with solid and liquid waste management facilities, drainage systems, ground water recharge, modern crematoria in coordination with various Ministries involved. Growing of Medicinal herbs and shrubs will also be promoted in these two villages.
Speaking on this occasion, Shri Tomar said clean water is essential for life and cleanliness is essential for well being of people. He commended the role of women in achieving ODF status. He also assured commitment of the central government for this cause.Shri Tomar also inaugurated a bio toilet in the village.Later, speaking at the Swachh Uttarakhand, Swachh Bharat Summit, organised by GIWA, he lauded the contribution of spiritual leaders in taking forward the swachhta movement and other social causes. He said all religions working together have great potential to influence behaviour change including toilet usage.On this occasion, Swami Chidanand Saraswati reiterated GIWA's commitment to make these two villages Ganga Grams with the cooperation of all ministries, departments, NMCG and other stakeholders. All faith-leaders assembled in summit expressed their dedication towards swachhta.