Thursday December 12, 2019

Campaign “WASH” : National Religious and Spiritual Leaders Join Hands to Achieve Cleaner India

To achieve a cleaner India, we have to not only sanitise our surroundings but our minds too, says Swami Chidanand Saraswati

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Representational Image, Pixabay

New Delhi, Nov 22, 2016: Spiritual and religious heads of several organisations belonging to different faiths have come together to counter pollution in the Ganges and other rivers as well as to fight global climate change.

To ensure access to clean drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, the campaign “WASH” is a cleanliness drive, mentioned PTI.

The idea came into being under the leadership of inter-faith leader Swami Chidanand Saraswati and it focuses on achieving peace and environmental protection and start a sanitation revolution in the country.

[bctt tweet=”Ganga is not a religious topic but a lifeline for millions of citizens in the nation.” username=””]

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Sanitation and meditation are of equal importance. “To achieve a cleaner India, we have to not only sanitise our surroundings but our minds too. Different religions and faiths along with stakeholders and civil society, we all have to come together to put our heart and soul in achieving a cleaner India,” said Saraswati.

Apart from that, he has initiated several critical programmes like Namame Ganga (Clean Ganga), Swachh Bharat (Clean India) and Swachhta Kranti (Clean Revolution). He is also the co-founder of Global Interfaith WASH Alliance (GIWA), mentioned PTI.

During Ujjain Kumbha Mela too, the alliance worked to make people aware of sanitation and repercussions of bad environment, especially on children’s health.

On World Toilet Day, which was on November 19, a huge crowd gathered that included youth and many leaders from different communities who pledged for a clean environment as well as proper sanitation. “It’s time that we should move from building temples to more and more toilets,” Saraswati said to PTI.

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For Chidanand Saraswati, Ganga is not a religious topic but a lifeline for millions of citizens in the nation.

“River Ganga is not a religious topic but the very lifeline of millions of people and our heritage. When we talk about Ganga we are actually talking about mostly all the rivers in the country and the deteriorating conditions of most of these rivers. Health, hygiene and harmony all should go together for a changed India,” he said.

To induce and spur growth, the drive is supporting technology and several other innovations.

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If we want to see true Socio-economic development, it has to happen from the bottom-of-the-pyramid population. Saraswati says, “We along with spiritual leaders from all across the world have created a new term for us- RSR- Religious Social Responsibility.”

“It is amazing how our Prime Minister spoke vigilantly about cleanliness from Red Fort and actually started a campaign to make people aware of the initiatives and how we all can come come together to achieve this dream,” Saraswati further added.

– prepared by NewsGram with PTI inputs

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Environmental Protection Agency Reverses its Decision Allowing Continued Use of Deadly Sodium Cyanide Traps

The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday reversed its preliminary decision allowing continued use of deadly sodium cyanide traps

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Environmental Protection, Sodium Cyanide, Traps
FILE - A cyanide device, called M-44, is shown in this photo released by the Bannock County Sheriff's Office, in Pocatello, Idaho, March 16, 2017. VOA

The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday reversed its preliminary decision allowing continued use of deadly sodium cyanide traps, blamed for injuring people and pets as well as their intended targets of coyotes and other predators.

EPA head Andrew Wheeler said in a statement he had decided the agency needed to do more analysis and consulting regarding the so-called M-44 traps, devices embedded in the ground that look like lawn sprinklers but spray cyanide when triggered by animals attracted by bait.

“I look forward to continuing this dialogue to ensure U.S. livestock remain well-protected from dangerous predators while simultaneously minimizing off-target impacts on both humans and non-predatory animals,” Wheeler said.

Environmental groups had blasted the agency’s preliminary decision last week reauthorizing the cyanide traps, saying they were impossible to use safely.

Environmental Protection, Sodium Cyanide, Traps
FILE – Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler testifies on Capitol Hill, April 9, 2019. VOA

Federal officials decided against using the devices in Idaho after a then 14-year-old boy was injured in 2017 when he encountered an M-44 with his dog on federal land near his house on the outskirts of Pocatello. His Labrador retriever died.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services uses the devices to kill coyotes and other livestock predators, mostly in the Western U.S.

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In 2018, M-44s killed about 6,500 animals, mainly coyotes and foxes. That was down from about 13,200 animals in 2017. (VOA)