About Swachh Bharat Mission

The evolution of sanitation in India is a rich tapestry woven with ancient wisdom and modern initiatives. From the Sindhu Valley civilization's innovative toilet construction to contemporary nationwide movements, the journey reflects a commitment to improving public health and hygiene.

Despite historical innovations, India grappled with sanitation challenges, particularly in rural areas, affecting millions. In 2014, only 39% sanitation coverage was achieved, impacting vulnerable demographics, notably women and children. Recognizing the urgency, various initiatives were launched to address this pressing issue.

Swachh Bharat Mission -Grameen (SBM): Phase I (2014-2019)

Responding to the imperative for comprehensive sanitation coverage, the Swachh Bharat Mission was launched on October 2, 2014, by the Hon’ble Prime Minister, with a focus on making India Open Defecation Free (ODF). This monumental endeavor mobilized millions, resulting in it becoming the largest mass movement and behavioral change programme in the world that led to the construction of over 100 million individual household toilets within five years, achieving 100% sanitation coverage by 2019.

The declaration of over 6 lakh villages as ODF by October 2019 marked a significant milestone, paying homage to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150th birth anniversary. Additionally, this achievement aligned with the SDG Target 6.2, effectively ending open defecation nationwide.


Impact of SBM Phase I

  • SBM saves lives: WHO 2018 - 3 lakh diarrheal deaths avoided in 2019 compared to 2014
  • SBM improves nutrition and productivity: BMGF 2017 - 58% higher cases of wasting among children in non-ODF areas
  • Swachhata secures safety and dignity of women: UNICEF 2017 – 93% women feel safer after getting a toilet at home
  • SBM saves money for the family: UNICEF 2017 - INR 50,000 saved every year on average by a household in an ODF village due to health costs avoided.
  • SBM saves the environment: UNICEF 2019 - 12.70 times less likelihood of groundwater contamination traceable to humans in ODF villages
  • Sanitation as everyone’s business: Other departments earmarked over INR 50,000 crores for sanitation in their respective sectors, e.g.: highways, petrol pumps, railways, schools, hospitals, etc.
  • Swachh Iconic Places (SIP) - Cleaning of iconic places; corporate and private support leveraged for each site.

Swachh Bharat Mission -Grameen (SBM): Phase II (2019-2025)

Having achieved the ODF status, SBM-G Phase II was launched with the objective of achieving Sampoorn Swachhata, i.e., sustaining the ODF status and managing solid and liquid waste by 2024-25 and transforming all the villages from ODF to ODF Plus Model.

Cleanliness campaign is a journey, which will go on continuously. After getting rid of open defecation, the responsibility has increased now. After ODF, the country is now working on the goal of ODF plus. Now we have to improve the management of waste, be it in a city or a village. We have to speed up the work of making wealth out of waste.

Hon’ble Prime Minister 8th August 2020

The key objective of SBM-G Phase II to:

  • Sustain the ODF status of villages
  • Improve the level of cleanliness in rural areas through solid and liquid waste management activities, making villages ODF Plus. This includes

    • ODF Sustainability
    • Solid Waste Management
    • Liquid Waste Management
    • Visual Cleanliness

    The total estimated outlay of SBM(G) Phase-II is Rs.1.40 lakh crores which is to be dovetailed through convergence between different verticals of financing and various schemes of Government of India and State Governments.

    The ODF Plus progress is being captured on SBM(G) MIS in following categories:

    • Aspiring: The village which is sustaining its ODF status and has arrangements for Solid Waste Management or Liquid Waste Management.
    • Rising: The village, which is sustaining its ODF status, and has arrangements for both Solid Waste Management and Liquid Waste Management.
    • Model: The village which is sustaining its ODF status; has arrangements for both Solid Waste Management and Liquid Waste Management; observes visual cleanliness i.e. minimal litter, minimal stagnant wastewater and no plastic waste dump in public places and displays ODF Plus IEC messages
ODF Village

Swachhata Green Leaf Rating:

Department of Drinking Water & Sanitation (DDWS), in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism introduced the Swachhata Green Leaf Rating (SGLR) initiative. This visionary program marks a crucial step towards cleaner and more sustainable tourism practices. SGLR is not just a recognition but a commitment to shaping the future of our tourism industry as it aligns with the Travel for LiFE (TFL) program under Mission LiFE, fostering awareness about sustainable tourism. By nudging both tourists and businesses to adopt practices harmonious with nature, the SGLR program aims to develop an economically viable, responsible, and resilient tourism industry.

Swachhata Hi Sewa (SHS) campaign:

  • As a prelude to Swachh Bharat Diwas on 2nd October, the annual Swachhata Hi Seva (SHS) fortnight is organized by Swachh Bharat Mission-Grameen and Urban between 15th Sept to 2nd Oct ‘23. The fortnight aims to mobilize the participation of crores of citizens across the country via various activities. In the Swachhata Hi Seva 2023, more than 109 crore individuals and 71 Ministries and Departments of GOI participated in the nationwide campaign over an 18-day period, averaging around 6 crore people participation per day across the country. A whopping 53 crore people gave ‘Shramdaan for Swachhata’ from across the country over the 18-day period, averaging around 3 crore people participation per day. These efforts showed remarkable results - cleaning of nearly 7,611 beaches, revitalizing 6,371 riverbanks and waterfronts, reclaiming over 15,576 legacy waste sites, improving 3,620 tourist and iconic destinations, and restoring over 1,23,840 public spaces. Additionally, over 16,000 water bodies were cleaned, over 87,000 institutional buildings rejuvenated, and nearly 66,779 garbage-vulnerable sites cleaned.

Light House Initiative :

DDWS launched the Light House Initiative (LHI) in collaboration with India Sanitation Coalition (ISC) and corporate partners in July 2022. Lighthouses as the name suggests are beacons of light that provide guidance for safe passage to sailors, symbolizing hope and security. Keeping the same ethos, the objective of this initiative was to develop 75 model ODF Plus blocks that cover all components of ODF Plus and serve as a learning lab, providing guidance and inspiration to other villages to enable them to achieve ODF Plus status at speed and scale. Report of LHI Phase 1 has been released and LHI Phase 2 work has been initiated.

Syama Prasad Mookerjee National Institute of Water and Sanitation(SPM-NIWAS):

DDWS setup the apex institute on Water and Sanitation, SPM-NIWAS Kolkata in 2022. The Institute is envisioned as a premier institute to develop capacities in states/UTs in the field of public health engineering, drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene through training programs. Such capacities are envisaged not only for the front-line workforce engaged in the implementation of the Swachh Bharat Mission and Jal Jeevan Mission but also for representatives of local bodies, both rural and urban. The institute offers short, medium & long-term courses which are not just related to engineering but also cover aspects of management, health, accounting, law and public policies

Always Learning, Always Updated

  • DDWS, as a premier institute, prioritizes continuous learning and development. To support this, it regularly updates its compendiums and manuals, which are available in the resources section of its website.