New Delhi, Nov 20: The Centre has earned a whopping Rs 1,162 crore from the disposal of scrap during its special cleanliness drives and plans are afoot to further accelerate it with the help of states, Union Minister Incharge Personnel/ DoPT, Dr Jitendra Singh said on Monday.
In an interview, the minister said, "A cleanliness campaign carried out at over 4 lakh sites resulted in weeding out of nearly 96.1 lakh files, including electronic files besides freeing up of 355.5 lakh square feet of spaces, which could house a huge mall. As much as Rs 1,162.49 crore have been earned through the disposal of office scrap including e-waste like old computers and other electronic items. The cleanliness drive has become India’s largest campaign for institutionalising Swachata."
Giving full credit to PM Narendra Modi, Dr Jitendra said the PM made a call for Swachhta from the Red Fort in his first Independence Day address of 2014 and soon it turned into a mass movement. In the very first year, more than 4 lakh toilets were built, he said.
Dr Singh said that without spending any significant sum, the government has been able to earn so many crores of revenue through the cleanliness campaign, which in my opinion is a huge success. "The revenue of Rs 1,162.49 crore was earned in the three special campaigns carried out by the central government from 2021 to 2023," he said, adding, "We have seen tremendous improvement in the office space. There was a time when we had cluttered office spaces with huge piles of files."
Through these campaigns, the union minister said, "Typical image of the government office space is no longer a reality. The special cleanliness campaign is one big initiative out of several other initiatives being taken to improve the overall functioning of the government. The Central government wants to make its cleanliness campaign a mass movement with the help of state governments."
We are in touch with the state governments," the minister said. "Some of the state governments, including Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh, have already taken noteworthy initiatives in this regard. We expect more state governments to accelerate this drive to make wealth out of waste. The cleanliness campaigns have resulted in a healthier work environment and decluttered office spaces," he said.
Dr Jitendra said the government offices have been modernised through the adoption of mechanical cleaning, digital initiatives, and compactors for effective records management. "Millions of citizens visiting government offices experience a healthier work environment and the adoption of digital portals has led to minimal office visits for them," he said.
He said the first edition of the special cleanliness drive covered around 6,154 office sites. "The efforts to enhance the office space and minimize pendency were continued and regular review meetings were held to sustain the efforts. Special campaign 2.0, held last year, covered around one lakh sites across the country," he said.
The minister said that during the special campaign 3.0 this year, a saturation approach was adopted to cover all field/public-centric offices covering around 2.5 lakh sites. "IT alone helped in earning around Rs 556 crore of revenue through scrap disposal," he added.