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Varanasi | Monday, Oct 12 2015

Eminent Globalist and Chairman of US-based New York Global Leaders Dialogue Phil Scanlan today lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modis initiative of Swachch Bharat (Clean India) and said that his past two days stay in India has been very impactful. Mr Scanlan, who is in the country to assess the work undertaken by sanitation Sulabh International, said that he was very impressed at the work of the NGO, which has now been wedded by the initiative of the government in making India a cleaner and hygienic nation.

After visiting the Assi Ghat, where cleaning and renovation work had been taken up by Sulabh, the expert said he was very hopeful that the temple town, which was a spiritually charged city, will get its due on the development path.

Mr Scanlan is the chairman of NYGLD an international leadership platform, which brings leaders from all continents to address global challenges, foster inter-generational dialogue and nurture cohorts of younger leaders.

The US delegation also met Dalit women, who were manual scavengers before Sulabh intervened in their lives and changed their profession.

Sulabh Founder Bindeshwar Pathak in his interaction with the media said that through social and behaviour change, a coalition was formed to promote the adoption of improved hygiene practices across the country.

“Sulabh has constructed nearly 1.3 million household toilets and 54 million government toilets, based on an innovative toilet design. Nearly 15 million people use these toilets daily. Apart from the construction of toilets, the organisation is also leading a movement to discourage manual scavenging he informed.

I have been moved by the way Dr Pathak and Sulabh International is changing the lives of millions of Indians. Its highly commendable that his work is not only stopping open defecation in India, but also restoring the dignity of the marginalised and mainstreaming them in society, Mr Scanlan said.

Another member of his team. Pam Kwatra said Dr Pathak had been shortlisted for this year’s International award by the group and the results are likely to be announced by the month-end. “Pathaks belief that providing toilets can be a tool for social change and that innovation is integral to improving the lives of those on the margins of society has impressed us a lot she added.UNI MB RJ NS1910