NATIONAL

Let cleanliness be our homage: PM

Narendra Modi

Narendra Modi  

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday asked people to mark the centenary year of the Champaran Satyagraha as an opportunity to adopt sanitation and cleanliness, an intrinsic part of Gandhian philosophy, as their own.

At a programme organised by the Culture Ministry, he said the country had paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi through all these years and that the time had come to turn a passive homage to an active one of adopting sanitation as a goal. “It is time to turn Shraddhanjali [homage] to Karyanjali [oblation through work],” he said at the programme that also involved a digital exhibition on the Satyagraha.

“Champaran was the place that acquainted the rest of the country with Satyagraha and with the greatness of Gandhiji. He went there as Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi but returned as the Mahatma. The event bears close study, as it teaches us not just the political tools that Gandhiji perfected during his struggle for the indigo farmers of Champaran, but also the panchamrut (five nectars) that we as Indians got as a result of the struggle. The first was of course the method of Satyagarha, the second was the realisation of the power of a people, the third was cleanliness and education, then, the mass participation of women and their power, and finally the powerful act of hand-spinning one’s own clothing.”

‘Purifying event’

He said India’s history was vast and glorious and could not be bound within the names of a few families and surnames. “The Satyagraha at Champaran is one of those events that purify us in their occurrence and retelling,” he said.

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