The Union Minister for Finance Shri. Arun Jaitely has said that the Centre is determined to make the Namami Gange project a big successs like Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in the coming three to four years. He was speaking today at Amrithapuri, in Kollam district of Kerala, after recieving the cheque for Rs.100 crore from spiritual leader Mata Amrithanandamayi, towards the construction of toilets in the poorest villages surrounding River Ganga, as part of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s Swachh Bharat and Namami Gange projects. Shri. Jaitley pointed out that forty per cent of Indians are dependent on River Ganga and in the past, thousands of crores of rupees have been spent for cleaning this holy river. The Finance Minister said, like the first phase of Swatchh Bharat Abhiyan, targeting construction of toilets in all the schools in the country which turned out to be a tremendous success, efforts are on to provide toilets in all houses in the country. He said that this is one campaign that had grown well beyond a Governmental campaign as people from all walks of life all over the country and Non Resident Indians (NRIs) across the globe have taken it over in a big way. Pointing out that the services of Amrithanandamayi Math is a combination of spirituality and philantropy, Shri Jaitley said the donation of Rs. 100 crore would send a symbolic message to others too. Namami Gange project was approved by the government in May this year with an allocation of Rs. 20,000 crore over the next five years.
Speaking on the occasion, Matha Amrithanandamayi said, compassionate service to the poor is real worship. She said this project will provide the much-needed amenities to those who truly need them. Matha Amrithanandamayi said another project worth Rs.100 crore would be soon launched for the construction of toilets throughout Kerala.
Former Union Minister Shri. O. Rajagopal and Shri. K.C.Venugopal, MP were among other dignitaries present on the occasion.
Prime Minister Shri. Narendra Modi and Mata Amrithanandamayi first discussed the possibility of Mata Amrithanandamayi Math’s involvement in the Namami Gange projects during her visit to New Delhi on March 28, 2015. The Prime Minister had expressed his gratitude to Amma for the Math’s environmental initiatives which are in line with Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.