In order to promote cleanliness in institutes of higher education, Human Resource Development Ministry has taken the initiative of conducting ‘swachhta’ drive. According to the officials, the government had received applications from over 3,000 institution amongst which 174 institutes were shortlisted.

The shortlisted colleges will be put into a ranking system according to the data provided by each of these institutes regarding overall cleanliness, hygiene and sanitation facilities for students. An official said “We have started sending inspection teams from the UGC and the AICTE to conduct the rankings and this will be done by the end of the month”. This means that the drive has already started. Swachhta drive is a vision to have a clean India that comes along the line of its bigger mission, namely, Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.

Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is a campaign to clean the streets, roads and infrastructure of the country by the Government of India. It aims at making India open defecation free and focuses on sanitation to ensure its citizens a hygienic environment. It was launched on October 2nd 2014 and is the biggest ever cleanliness drive in India.

The top ranking institutes under the swachhta drive will be rewarded by the ministry on September 15th. Institution with top ranking will have to score high on basic hygiene in kitchen and toilets, student-toilet ratio and innovative methods used to dispose garbage. “The basic objective these rankings have is to create peer pressure and awareness towards cleanliness” the official said.

A nationwide enthusiasm for a cleaner environment would not only make the country a better place to live, but will also help in reducing a large amount of health related problems. Swachhta drive is a good attempt at encouraging higher education institutes to set an example for the rest.