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PM Modi receives Gates Foundation Goalkeepers Award for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan

"This honour is not mine but of the crores of Indians who not only fulfilled the Swachh Bharat dream but also made it a part of their daily lives," PM Modi said after receiving the award. 

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: September 25, 2019 8:01:29 am
pm modi award, Pm Modi awarded for swachh bharat, PM Modi receives Goalkeepers award, Bill & Melinda gates foundation award on Modi, Narendra Modi, Bill Gates, Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Indian Express Prime Minister Narendra Modi receives ‘Global Goalkeeper Award’ from Bill Gates.(Source: Twitter/@narendramodi)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi Wednesday received the Global Goalkeeper Award from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for his government’s initiatives on sanitation, including the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.

Goalkeepers is the foundation’s campaign to accelerate progress towards sustainable development goals. Modi has been chosen for the award — one of the most prestigious awards in the development sector — for the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, which was among the first programmes announced by him in his first stint as prime minister.

“This honour is not mine but of the crores of Indians who not only fulfilled the Swachh Bharat dream but also made it a part of their daily lives,” Modi said on accepting the award. Receiving the award in the year of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary was significant for him, the prime minister said, adding that when 130 crore people take a pledge, any challenge can be overcome.

“In the last five years a record more than 11 crore toilets were constructed. If this mission has benefited someone the most it is the poor of this country and the women,” he said.

The prime minister dedicated the award to the people of India. “I dedicate the Global Goalkeeper Award, conferred by the @gatesfoundation, to the 130 crore people of India and the collective endeavours of our nation to improve cleanliness. It makes me most happy that India’s successes in sanitation have helped women and children the most,” he tweeted.

A statement from the foundation says, “Before the Swachh Bharat mission, over 500 million people in India did not have access to safe sanitation, and now, the majority do… The Swachh Bharat Mission can serve as a model for other countries around the world that urgently need to improve access to sanitation for the world’s poorest.”

Addressing a global climate action summit organised by the UN Secretary General Monday, the Prime Minister stressed that “time for talking is over” and that the “world needs to act now”.

In 2014, immediately after assuming power after a landslide win in the Lok Sabha elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced the Swachh Bharat campaign and vowed to eliminate open defecation nationwide in five years. The mission has two thrusts: Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (rural), which operates under the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (urban), which operates under the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

In 2018, Modi had received the United Nation’s highest environmental honour, the “Champions of the Earth Award”, from United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

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