The Jagannath temple in Puri has been selected as one of the 10 iconic places in the country that will be developed as a ‘Swachh Tourist Destination’ by the Central Government. As a part of this, a special cleanliness drive will be taken up in the temple and nearby areas.
The government has roped in cash-rich public sector companies such as Nalco and Hindustan Zinc, to fund a part of its Swachh Bharat programme where it identified 10 iconic places with higher footfalls to clean on par with international standards.
The tourists spots are Vaishno Devi in Jammu and Kashmir, Taj Mahal in Uttar Pradesh, Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh, Golden Temple in Punjab, Ajmer Sharif in Rajasthan, Puri Jagannath temple in Odisha and Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus in Mumbai, Maharashtra. Others are Manikarnika Ghat in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, Meenakshi Temple in Tamil Nadu and Kamakhya Temple in Assam.
“We are taking help of experts from World Bank for bench marking of the cleanliness. After the pilot project the government may roll out the scheme to other tourist places in the country,” said drinking water and sanitation secretary Parameswaran Iyer.
Besides, the Centre is also in the process of drafting standard operating procedures to ensure cleanliness around national park, sanctuaries, tiger reserves and identified 10 such locations with higher footfalls for the task.