Hand Washing Day celebrated as Heart Washing Day in Lucknow
Valmiki Samaj (a community of sanitation workers) who are responsible for cleaning the sewerage drains of Lucknow were honoured in an event in their own community, in Luv Kush Nagar, Indira Nagar, Luckow, by Pujya Swamiji today just along the Kukrail Naadi, along whose banks just a few days ago Pujya Swamiji had inaugurated UP’s first Sewage to Selfie point with the Hon’ble Chief Minister of UP MYogiAdityanathji and Hon’ble Union Urban Development Minister Shri Nitin Gadkariji and many others.
Pujya Swamiji first paid homage to Mahatma Gandhiji and Babasaheb Ambedkar. He then decided to take a round of the entire settlement to witness and understand the real problems of the community. Young children sung a beautiful prayer of oneness and equality as Pujya Swamiji was warmly welcomed by the locals.
Ms. Kusum Johari, President of Harijan Sevak Sangh UP welcomed Pujya Swamiji. Thereafter, two conscious and young women Ms. Chandi Devi and Ms. Shivani presented their views as the voice of the community. They spoke out their hearts by sharing, “we want to live with self-respect and fulfill our dreams.” They added, “We might be getting and have access to the amenities required but still we can only dream about being treated equally in the society. We go through intense mental and moral abuse on day to day basis, even our children are not spared, this stigma needs to be broken.” Hence, this event was organised in support of furthering the efforts of the Swachh Bharat Mission to go deeper into our communities, breaking bridges and barriers in our thought and perception of sanitation workers and their families.
Sharing the role of sweepers and sanitation workers critical role in the Swachh Bharat Mission, India and Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inspiring and historic address to the nation on the importance of the sanitation in India four years ago, Pujya Swamiji termed the community as “Safayee karmee nahee badhayee karmee,” worthy of everyone’s utmost respect and appreciation.
Pujya Swamiji shared, “All are equal in heart of God. Hence, today in Hand Washing Day should become Heart Washing Day, just as soap washes our hands let us cultivate love and compassion in our families and communities which will clean the dirt of discrimination and inequality from our hearts.”
On the occasion of Global Handwashing, Pujya Swamiji emphasized the importance of hygiene and distributed free handwashing soap to the community.
Pujya Swamiji also distributed sweets (ladoos) on the occasion of Pujya Swami MM Swami Asanganandji’s birthday and as an early Diwali celebration. He inspired the Valmiki Samaj to light the lamp of cleaniness, hope and dignity. To one enthusiastic participant Smt Akbari Devi he shared if you start walking for a Swachh Bharat, I and the whole community will walk with you.
Pujya Swamiji’s added “We need to bring a holistic change so that the people who have been undergoing through a social harassment from the past 3000 years can gain the lost respect and dignity. Valmiki Samaaj who has the burden on its shoulders to keep the city clean should have access to the clean, tidy and humble behavior of the society.” Harijan Sevak Sangh and theiir efforts for working towards the upliftment of underprivileged was highly appreciated. Pujya Swamiji also emphasized on the livelihood programmes that can be carried for such class.