The Sparkling Fra­ter­nity

India Today - - SAFAI GIRI - —Ki­ran D. Tare

The fourth edi­tion of the In­dia To­day Safai­giri Sum­mit and Awards in Mum­bai on Oc­to­ber 2 stressed on the im­por­tance of pub­lic par­tic­i­pa­tion in keep­ing the coun­try clean. The day-long event saw bril­liant per­for­mances by a range of singers, from icons like Sonu Nigam and Ab­hi­jeet to the sea­soned Ab­hi­jeet Sawant and new­bies like Meghana Sharma and Shahid Mallya.

Ac­tors Rad­hika Apte and Ayush­mann Khur­rana ad­mit­ted that the clean­li­ness mantra is no longer to be scoffed at. Apte nar­rated an ex­pe­ri­ence how she as a school stu­dent had washed the toi­lets for two weeks as part of a school project. Ac­tors Ar­jun Kapoor and Pari­neeti Cho­pra in­sisted that il­lit­er­acy and un­safe en­vi­ron­ments for women must be flushed out from In­dia.

Call­ing him­self a baagi (rebel),

Ab­hi­jeet al­leged that the In­dian film in­dus­try was full of hyp­ocrites. He claimed that real tal­ent was be­ing eclipsed, point­ing to how ac­tor Shah Rukh Khan’s ca­reer started go­ing south after he stopped lend­ing his voice to him.

Union min­is­ter for trans­port and high­ways Nitin Gad­kari pre­sented awards to 15 or­gan­i­sa­tions and in­di­vid­u­als for their con­tri­bu­tions to make In­dia garbage-free and clean. In his ad­dress, Gad­kari em­pha­sised that In­dia should ex­plore all op­por­tu­ni­ties to con­vert its waste to wealth. Any cost­ef­fec­tive, pol­lu­tion-free and indige­nous tech­nol­ogy would help re­duce its ex­pen­di­ture on im­ports, he added.

Gad­kari pointed to how the Nag­pur mu­nic­i­pal cor­po­ra­tion was earn­ing an­nual roy­al­ties of Rs 79 crore by sell­ing its sewage wa­ter to a Ma­ha­rash­tra power com­pany. He re­it­er­ated that the Ganga river will be cleaned as per sched­ule. “We have ap­pointed con­trac­tors and

have tasked them to op­er­ate and main­tain 250 projects for 15 years,” he said.

In his wel­come ad­dress, Aroon Purie, Chair­man and Ed­i­tor-in-Chief of In­dia To­day Group, ex­plained his vi­sion for a clean In­dia. “I don’t know about an In­dian on the moon, but I will be de­lighted when ev­ery In­dian who has to defe­cate in the open finds a toi­let of her own. With ad­e­quate wa­ter and sew­er­age, of course.”


BRIGHT START Union min­is­ter Nitin Gad­kari and In­dia To­day Chair­man Aroon Purie with the award win­ners

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