Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched ‘Swachhata Hi Seva Movement’ and took part in a Swachh Bharat Abhiyan at a school in New Delhi on Saturday where he spoke to students about the need for cleanliness of the surroundings.

Speaking to students of Baba Saheb Ambedkar Higher Secondary School located in Delhi’s Paharganj, the PM highlighted the achievements of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan which was launched on 2 October 2014.

At the school, the students enthusiastically told the PM that they will follow the path of Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar.

“Let us strengthen the Swachh Bharat Mission,” the PM wrote on Twitter, adding, “Joined the ‘Swachhata Hi Seva Movement’ at the Baba Sahib Ambedkar Secondary School in Paharganj, Delhi. This school’s campus was bought by the venerable Dr. Ambedkar to ensure children from poor families get quality education.”

The PM also took the broom to sweep the premises. He collected the trash strewn around the premises and disposed them off in a proper manner.

Launching the ‘Swachhata Hi Seva Movement’ today, the PM hailed the immense contribution of India’s ‘Nari Shakti’ (women power) in the Swachh Bharat Mission.

“The contribution of India’s Nari Shakti (women power) in the Swachh Bharat (clean India) Mission is immense,” Modi said while launching the movement dedicated as a tribute to Mahatma Gandhi.

“Youngsters are ambassadors of social change. The way they have furthered the message of cleanliness is commendable. The youth are at the forefront of a positive change in India,” Modi said.

Highlighting the success of the clean India mission, Modi said, “The Swachhta coverage is now above 90 per cent which used to be 40 per cent four years ago. This happened in just four years.

“The credit for the success of Swachhata Abhiyan goes to the people of this nation and not the government alone,” he said, adding that over nine crore toilets have been built in last four years and over 4.5 lakh villages have been declared as open defecation free.

Modi also stressed that by only building toilets India won’t become clean.

“Cleanliness is a habit in which one has to indulge himself everyday and change in behaviour is also required,” he said.

The PM also described river Ganga as our “culture, heritage and identity” and urged people to contribute towards cleaning it.

“And banks of River Ganga becoming open defecation free shall be an important stage towards maintaining the purity of the river,” Modi said.

(With inputs from agencies.)