Mumbai: With the belief that Swachh Bharat is not only about Clean India through waste management but also involves changing habits and mindsets through a sustainable process of creating awareness, Welingkar Institute of Management Development & Research (WeSchool) organized a roundtable discussion, “Swachh Bharat ~ Naya Prayaas” on November 28, 2014.
Madhav Bhandari, spokesperson BJP (Maharashtra), Prafulla Marpakwar Senior journalist, Times of India shared insights at the discussion aimed at creating structures to impart the importance of hygiene and facilitate its implementation at several levels, to bring about a positive change in every household in the country through diverse initiatives.
The roundtable was chaired by Dr. R A Mashelkar, former Director General of the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), and currently head of an Expert committee that recommends best technologies in sanitation and water to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The roundtable at WeSchool saw representation from various stakeholders that included policy makers, municipality officials, heads of educational institutions, faculty members, young school students, medical practitioners, corporate executives, NGO representatives, CSR heads of companies, and representatives of local bodies. While the discussion threw up a diversity of views, ideas and opinions what emerged out of them were ways and means for spreading social awareness and changing mindsets about cleanliness, creating viable local entrepreneurial models around sanitation services and products and focused on innovative uses of technology for a cleaner India.
Dr R A Marshelkar’s inspiring address had the following message; “Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan” is about transformation. To achieve the ambitious targets set up by the PM, we must design those technological and social Innovations that are scalable, sustainable, affordable, acceptable and rapidly deployable. We will need a diversity of solutions as the solution applicable in Kerala will not work in Kashmir. We must turn Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan into a people’s movement; a Swachh Bharat Andolan, only then we will succeed. Together we can do it”.
Madhav Bhandari, senior leader from BJP, while reiterating PM’S vision, expressed, “Decentralization of technology is the solution, as people must have access to simple technology tools that they can use in their day to day lives. Educational institutes like WeSchool can contribute immensely in this process and turn our PM’s vision into reality.”
Prafulla Marpakwar, Senior journalist, spoke about the positive change that an individual can bring in the social strata by dedicating his time and efforts. “PM has made a beginning but the movement can’t remain a one day activity, there should be consistency. Let us rededicate ourselves to the cause by turning the Abhiyaan into a national movement.”
Prof Dr Uday Salunkhe, Group Director said, “Today, we are looking forward to listening to the stakeholders and collaborating with them in spreading awareness as well as designing scalable business models that will create a wave of sustainable change that will transform the nation’s future. WeSchool believes in mentoring our young students into seekers in search of answers, that will heighten their sense of responsibility and empathy, broaden the world view and assist them to create a new identity of self that they can relate to. As the vision of self undergoes a deep change, the young manager moves from responsive to transformative contribution to the society. Together we can transform India and become contributors to change in the global context”.
The roundtable also saw lively inputs from the young students of General Education Academy and M P Bhuta Sarvajanik School who spoke about the measures adapted by them at school and home in response to the clean India mission started by the PM. “If our PM can lift the broom to clean the streets, why can’t we?” was the question asked by one of the young student that summed up the essence of the roundtable.
The findings and conclusions of the roundtable will be presented to the Expert committee on Water and Sanitation and form a part of their agenda as well as action plan for Mission 2019.