KOLLAM, India, September 14, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
Indian spiritual leader and humanitarian supports Modi-led project to rid India of curse of open defecation
Spiritual leader and humanitarian Sri Mata Amritanandamayi (Amma) today presented Arun Jaitley, the Minister of Finance of India, a cheque for US$15 million for the construction of toilets in the poorest villages surrounding the Ganges River, as part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Swachh Bharat (Clean India) and Namami Gange (Clean Ganges) projects - efforts to end the life-threatening diseases affecting millions of Indian citizens stemming from contaminated water sources, caused by widespread open defecation.
A second $15million phase of the project is due to be announced later in the month, at Amma's birthday celebrations.
"This project will provide much-needed amenities to those who truly need them," said Amma. "Along with construction, education is also required. The villagers need to be taught that open defecation leads to water and soil pollution, which further contaminates food and leads to many types of parasitic infections." On top of the donation, Amma's organization, Embracing the World, will also be providing such education.
"This is a gigantic step that Amma has taken today - both a material and symbolic message to the world who is concerned about the Ganga. More important than 100 crores is when a saint of the relevance of Amma takes a step in this direction, it sends a message across the world-not merely in India-that everyone who is committed to this great cause should contribute to it." Sri. Arun Jaitley, Honourable Minister of Finance, 11 September 2015, Amritapuri Ashram
Prime Minister Modi and Amma first discussed the involvement of Embracing the World (ETW) in the Clean Ganges Project during Amma's visit to Delhi in March 2015. At that time the Prime Minister expressed his gratitude to Amma for her environmental initiatives, which are in alignment with his Clean India Project, the country's largest environmental and cleanliness drive to date, which includes the goal of providing sanitary toilets to more than 60 million homes by 2019. Present figures show nearly 600 million people in India have no access to sanitary toilets - a major cause of disease and further societal problems.
Embracing the World is an international charitable organisation engaged in a variety of efforts to relieve poverty and suffering in communities around the world.
Amma.org and Embracing The World
CONTACT: Toby Burnham; firstname.lastname@example.org; +44-(0)7990-555-290