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Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said the government has “almost” achieved the target of ensuring separate toilets for boys and girls in schools across the country, even as he asserted the achievement has instilled self-confidence in people of “achieving any feat”. In his last Independence Day speech from Red Fort, the Prime Minister had promised to ensure separate toilets for boys and girls in schools across the country within a year, as lack of such facilities were keeping girls away from schools in many pockets of the country. “When we took up the work and team India realised its responsibilities, it was discovered that there were 2.62 lakh schools where over 4.25 lakh toilets are needed. The figure was so big that there would have been requests to extend the deadline. “But see the resolve of team India. No one put up such a request and today on August 15, I congratulate team India that they have respected the tricolour and have left no stone unturned to realise the dream and almost accomplished constructing the toilets,” Modi said in his speech today. According to the HRD Ministry’s Swachh Vidyalaya portal, which compiled figures from across the country, the 100 per cent target was achieved yesterday. Modi said that the latest achievement has instilled “self-confidence among people of achieving any feat”.
He lauded the efforts of the younger generation, especially the children at home, for “giving a meaning” to the ‘swachh bharat abhihyan’ campaign and creating awareness in households to ensure a clean surrounding. “This is not about constructing 4.25 lakh toilets only. This is about removing an atmosphere of hopelessness where nothing could be achieved. The toilet construction is a reflection of self confidence where we are second to none and India can accomplish any goal,” he said. Modi also congratulated state governments, district-level officers and school managements for ensuring toilets in every schools within the time frame.