Global Interfaith Alliance India Founder/Chair, Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji flagged off the Namami Gange: Ganga Jagriti Yatra with the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Mahant Yogi Adityananthji, just outside his residence in the state’s capital, Lucknow, with Shri Suresh Khannaji, Parliamentary Affairs & Urban Development Minister of GoUP, Shri Anil Rajbharji, Minister Sainik Kalyan, Food Processing, Home Guard and PRD, GoUP, Shri Surya Kumarji, DG.
The yatra will help inspire industries, local organisations, youth, pilgrims and concerned civil society to connect with this mission, take ownership in keeping the river clean and free flowing. It will move from Lucknow to Haridwar, Rishikesh, Bijnor and many other cities and towns in UP, where a majority of the river flows and in which the river is most endangered and polluted from the 9th August to the middle of September.
On the occasion Pujya Swamiji blessed everyone by saying, “This Yatra (journey) illustrates that we must each start this movement from our own homes, protecting the fast depleting lifeline of our nation-Maa Ganga. The change has to start with us and it must start now!” Halfway during His speech there was a heavy downpour of rain, Pujya Swamiji encouraged everyone to stay in their seats and reminded them that a little bit of rain should not deter them from the work ahead, which will be to preserve the National River Ganga and Her tributaries for many generations to come. He also gave a clarion call to everyone to make their traditions, festivals and celebrations green as well as to work to green both sides of the river bank so that the rivers flow and recharge. Pujya Swamiji lauded the Honble CM’S great leadership in creating a cleaner and greener UP and shared that citizens of UP were truly very fortunate to have him at the helm of their state, which has a population equivalent to many countries combined.
The Honble Chief Minister shared in his inspiring address, “My government is committed to this vital and noble pledge that our Honble Prime Minister has taken, but we must all do our part to contribute towards the Namami Gange mission. I encourage the UP Home Guards to take this Yatra with great enthusiasm, energy and commitment towards completion, connecting everyone in ensuring a free flowing and unpolluted Mother Ganga for all.” He shared that just like the River Ganga has healing properties in its water so too does rainwater, hence shared that the downpour was truly a very auspicious sign.
During the event Pujya Swamiji gifted the Honble UP CM a sacred elachi mala, as a symbol of his ever green leadership, and also a special peepal tree, as a symbol of his commitment to making the banks of Mother Ganga clean and green for all.