Bengaluru: Chief ministers of 10 states across the country are meeting here on Wednesday to discuss steps to achieve universal sanitation, improve cleanliness and make India open defecation free by 2019.

“The third meeting of the Swachh Bharat Mission’s 10-member sub-group is being held under its convener, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu,” a state official told IANS here Tuesday.

Besides Karnataka’s Siddaramaiah, his counterparts Nitish Kumar (Bihar), Arvind Kejriwal (Delhi), Manohar Lal Khattar (Haryana), Devendra Fadnavis (Maharashtra), Lal Thanhawla (Mizoram), Pawan Kumar Chamling (Sikkim), Harish Rawat (Uttarkhand) and Mamata Banerjee (West Bengal) are participating in the meeting at Vidhana Soudha.

The mission is part of the NITI (National Institute for Transforming India) Aayog’s initiative to clean up the country by 2019, as a fitting tribute to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150th birth anniversary. Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869.

Niti Aayog chief executive Sindhushree Khuller and Rural Development Secretary Saraswathi Prasad will also participate in the meeting to finalise the report to be submitted to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who also is the Niti Aayog chairman, for budgetary support and a road map to achieve the mission’s objectives.

The sub-group’s first meeting, held on April 30 in New Delhi, discussed the needs of the mission such as best technologies and best practices available in the country and overseas to implement the ambitious mission on a massive scale.

The second meeting was held on May 19 at Chandigarh, where six chief ministers of non-Bharatiya Janata Party states, including Karnataka, were absent.

Modi launched the mission on Gandhi Jayanti last year in Delhi.

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