“Cleanliness is Next to Godliness”

Cleanliness | Godliness | 21st July 2022 | Virtual Wire



A tree can survive only if it has effective roots. In the same way, villages are the roots of a well-developed country.

In India with more than 50% population residing in villages, they form an integral part of the development of the nation. It is therefore important that we must keep our villages clean and sanitized. The thoughts like maintaining cleanliness are the job of a sweeper and, if we only have to keep the surroundings clean then what is the sweeper for, that has to be shed off from people’s minds.

As quoted by Mahatma Gandhi - “An ideal village will be constructed as to lend itself to perfect sanitation.”


Human nature is to find benefits in every work we do. So, the first question which comes to our mind is why we should keep our villages clean? What is the use of sanitation? Keeping our surroundings clean is an alternate way of keeping ourselves clean. Keeping our surroundings clean protects us from different kinds of diseases which occurs due to improper sanitation. It provides us with a clean mindset and prevents unhealthy thoughts from entering our minds. It enhances positivity. If we keep our surroundings clean we can realise how beautifully God has crafted nature and it will motivate us to conserve our natural resources. Proper methods of sanitation decrease the chances of breaking out contagious diseases. Perfect modes of sanitation also help to enhance the economy. According to a World Bank study, economic losses due to inadequate sanitation to the Indian economy are equivalent to 6.4% of its GDP.

Referring to the present Covid-19 pandemic it is clearly visible that maintaining good hygienic habits is one of the most important measures to save ourselves from the pandemic disease. The main problem which comes as barriers in the way of making a “Clean India” is people’s mindset. It is not that the villagers do not have ideas but they cannot implement them due to the non-availability of facilities and their poor economic status. Villagers think it is only the Government’s duty to keep the country clean and hygienic. Once Mahatma Gandhi said- So long as you do not take the broom and bucket in your hands, you cannot make your towns and cities clean”. The other problems are open defecation, spitting in public places, and improper sewage and drainage systems.

If the adults of the village come out and clean their surroundings themselves, the future citizens of India, that is the students will get inspired to maintain proper sanitation norms in their schools. We students of India have a great role to play in making a “Clean India”. To increase the craze and interest of


students the school must arrange for a Cleanliness movement to guide the students. Toddlers must be taught about the importance of cleanliness and sanitation. Students must launch movements to keep their school campus clean.

As said by Gandhiji- “You will make your intuition ideal, if besides giving the students literary education, you have made cooks and sweepers of them.”


Already there have been commendable signs of progress in India’s hygiene movement. India presently is in the second stage of the “Swachh Bharat Mission” launched from 2014 to 2019, to eliminate open defecation and improve solid waste management in urban and rural areas in India. It was launched on the occasion of Mahatma Gandhi’s 145th birth anniversary. The movement has shown a lot of progress. Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Sikkim, and Kerala became open defecation free during the course of the program. As a continuation of the above programme The Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation (DDWS), Ministry of Jal Shakti is establishing a state of art Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra in New Delhi. The RSK is being set up as an experience centre, which uses modern technology to chronicle India’s Swachhata journey. The Government alone cannot work for a “Clean India”. As the citizens of the country, we have to cooperate with the Government and make its work easier because at the end of the day it is our moral duty as a citizen of India.

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