Madhya Pradesh’s Indore finally gained its name as the first “Water Plus” city in the country and got a big appreciation for the same from none other than Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The praise came as PM Modi was discussing Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in the 80th episode of his Mann Ki Baat radio address broadcast on Sunday.

“Whenever we talk about Swachh Bharat, Indore’s name automatically comes up. This is because the city has created a unique identity for itself for cleanliness and the people of Indore deserve applause for this. Indore has topped Swachh Bharat rankings for many years now. But people have now decided that they are not merely content with the ranking. They want to move forward and achieve something new,” he spoke while addressing the city.

“Such a city is one where no sewage is released into a public water source without treatment. Citizens have themselves come forward to link drains in their houses to sewage lines and have also carried out the Swachhata Mission. Because of this, the volume of sewage water mixing into the waters of rivers Saraswati and Kanha has vastly reduced. This improvement is visible as well,” he further added, “while appreciating the efforts of the citizens in making and maintaining this Water Plus status of the city.

The commercial capital and largest city of Madhya Pradesh, Indore, gained its recognition as the first Water Plus city of India on August 11. The Union government gave the declaration under Swachh Survekshan 2021. To earn such a name, cities are supposed to fulfil three criteria: no dirty water from the city should enter its river or drain, all public toilets should be connected to the sewage lines and should be properly cleaned, and 30 per cent of the sewage water should go for reuse and recycle.

Tazeen Ansari