Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Friday recommended oath titled ‘Saptapadi’ — seven vows — to Mayors, corporators and councillors of local bodies while launching the ‘Swachh Maharashtra Abhiyan’ on the lines of ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’. The central objective is to expedite the process of cleanliness drive complete with “toilet every household” by October 2, 2015 and 2016. At present, 42 per cent households in rural Maharashtra do not have independent toilets.
The term ‘saptapadi’ can be equated to the “vows” taken during marriage by bride and groom in Maharashtra. The state government introduced the concept of a pledge to create awareness and seriousness about the ‘Swachh Maharashtra Abhiyan’ which is considered integral for good health and development of every region.
The seven points include: A promise of participation in the Swachh Maharashtra campaign; mobilising the public participation; hundred per cent toilets in every corporation ward or areas; creating awareness about segregation of wet and dry waste; adopting scientific method for waste disposal; take initiative for promoting greenery and open spaces.
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Actor Aamir Khan also took the oath urging people to undertake the campaign earnestly. Khan, who is a brand ambassador for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, said, “I believe if we go ahead with passion, things will change.” Citing an example he said, “I always say you cannot make films with money alone. Unless there is fire, passion you cannot make a film.”
Beginning with local body representatives who work at grassroots level representing Konkan region, Fadnavis has decided to carry out the exercise Marathwada, western Maharashtra, Vidarbha and north Maharashtra in phases. He has also linked the cleanliness drive to the smart cities project.
Fadnavis said, “The outcome of the Swachh Maharashtra Abhiyan would also mirror how ready the local bodies and people are for smart cities project. Fadnavis said, “ Ideally, there is no quick-fix solution for transforming the state overnight of all dirt.” At the same adoption of simple mechanisms would enable us to fight the menace almost by 50 per cent. Fadnavis said, “It is not the funds that will make the change. What is required is public participation in the project.”
According to Fadnavis, “Today, we are approached by several companies claiming they have advanced technology to address solid waste problem.” However, our experience shows there is no quick-fix solution. It has to be tackled effectively at the administrative level supported by people and effective campaign.”
He revealed, “At the chief ministers’ sub-committee meeting I have suggested we should formulate definite guidelines on adoption of technology to deal with solid waste management.” He conceded that even in the existing model of waste disposal there are flaws cited and it required some corrections. The chief minister was referring to adverse reports on how incineration generates poisonous gas that poses health hazards.
“At a meeting of chief ministers sub-group (under banner Niti Ayog), I discussed the matter with Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu on need to have a technology which can be adopted to address solid waste disposal.”