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Mention On ‘Mann Ki Baat’ Boosted Campaign, Haryana Man On A Mission To Clean Himalayas Tells PM Modi

On the 100th episode of the broadcast, PM Modi spoke with Pradeep Sangwan clearing the Himalayas of the waste left behind by tourists under the Healing Himalayas Foundation

Mention On 'Mann Ki Baat' Boosted Campaign, Haryana Man On A Mission To Clean Himalayas Tells PM Modi
Pradeep Sangwan is on a mission to clear the Himalayas of the waste left behind by tourists

Chandigarh: Pradeep Sangwan, who is on a mission to clear the Himalayas of the waste left behind by tourists, said he had almost given up his initiative but a mention from Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his “Mann ki Baat” programme gave a renewed impetus to his efforts. Mr Sangwan, who established the Healing Himalayas Foundation for the purpose nearly seven years ago, told PTI on Sunday (April 30) that the prime minister mentioning his campaign during his past radio broadcast boosted his campaign.

Also Read: Haryana Man On Mission To Clean Up Litter From Himalayas

The Haryana native interacted with Modi during the 100th episode of the programme, broadcast on Sunday.

On the 100th episode of the broadcast, PM Modi spoke with some of those who have found mention on previous editions of “Mann ki Baat”. During Sunday’s episode, he also spoke to Sunil Jaglan, another Haryana native and the man behind the ‘Selfie with Daughter’ initiative.

Connecting with Mr Sangwan, PM Modi, while referring to an earlier episode, said,

We had discussed about the ‘Healing Himalayas’ campaign.

PM Modi told Mr Sangwan,

You thought of healing the Himalayas and you ran a campaign. How is your campaign (going) nowadays?

Mr Sangwan told the prime minister that they began on a nervous note and at one time he was not sure if he would be able to sustain this life long as few people were taking an interest in the campaign and not giving much importance to the initiative.

He had almost thought of giving up at one stage, Mr Sangwan told the prime minister.

However, after the prime minister mentioned the initiative during a “Mann ki Baat” episode in 2020, things changed as several people joined the campaign, Mr Sangwan told PM Modi.

Also Read: Dia Mirza ‘Heals The Himalayas’, Contributes In A Four-Hour Clean-Up Drive To Do Her Bit For The Environment

PM Modi told him that he was performing a noble duty in the peaks of the Himalayas in the true sense.

And I firmly believe that hearing your name, people remember how you are associated with the cleanliness campaign of the mountains, said PM Modi, and added that several mountaineers are posting photos connected with “swachhta” (cleanliness).

“This is good, due to efforts put in by my friends like you, the notion of ‘waste is also a wealth’ is percolating into the minds of the people and the environment is also being protected,” said the prime minister.

Mr Sangwan told PM Modi, “It (the campaign) is doing fine and from 2020, whatever work we used to do in a span of five years is being done in a year now,” to which the prime minister exclaimed “Wow!” Mr Sangwan said that earlier they used to conduct six to 10 cleaning drives in a year “but today, we collect five tonnes of garbage on a daily basis from different locations”.

He further said that after the prime minister mentioned the campaign in his earlier “Mann ki Baat” address, things began to speed up in a manner he had never thought.

Mr Sangwan told PM Modi,

I am really thankful that how you find out about people like us, you get stories of people like us from remote areas in the Himalayas and working at such altitude and you got our story and brought our work before the world.

Also Read: Everything We Buy Today, Comes With A Water Tag, Carbon Tag: Garvita Gulhati, UN’s Young Climate Leader

“So, it was an emotional moment for me then, and now, too, that I am able to talk to the country’s ‘pradhan sevak’…,” said Mr Sangwan.

During a previous interaction with PTI, Mr Sangwan had said he came in contact with some students from Himachal Pradesh while doing his graduation from Chandigarh’s DAV College and he started to explore the state with them in 2007-08.

After moving to Himachal Pradesh in 2009, he undertook extensive travel and during that he met a group of people from the “gaddi (shepherd)” community in Lahaul. He was impressed how, even in a very remote area, they cared so much for their environment.

His foundation set up its first waste collection and sorting unit three years ago in Rakcham near Chitkul of Kullu district, followed by four other facilities in Mansari (Kullu), Pooh (Kinnaur), Tabo (Spiti) and Narkanda (Shimla).

Mr Sangwan had said his foundation is working with the Department of Environment, Science and Technology, Himachal Pradesh State Pollution Control Board and the state’s Forest department to set up a plant.

Also Read: Fight Against Plastic Pollution Is The Mission Of 18-year-old Climate Warrior Aditya Mukarji

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ populationindigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.

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