Mumbai: Sushma Swaraj lauds Swachh Bharat as gutter water accumulates nearby

Oct 10, 2014, 09:41 IST | Shashank Rao

In a speech at Dharavi, the Union minister spoke of the success of the clean-up campaign; meanwhile, gutter water flowed underneath her stage and accumulated few feet away

One could not help but notice the irony of the situation yesterday, as Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj heaped praises upon the Swachh Bharat mission launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi while dirty water from a gutter accumulated a few feet away from her. In fact, Swaraj had to jump over the filthy stream to reach her vehicle after her speech.

Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had come to Dharavi to campaign for BJP candidate Divya Dholay. Pic/PTIUnion External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had come to Dharavi to campaign for BJP candidate Divya Dholay. Pic/PTI

The minister was addressing the Valkmiki community in Dharavi, in a by-lane near Ambedkar Chowk at Matunga Labour Camp, while campaigning for BJP’s candidate from Dharavi assembly constituency, Divya Dholay. Speaking in chaste Haryanvi the community hails from Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan the Union minister proclaimed that the clean-up campaign, which was launched on October 2, was a huge success.

Right below the very stage she stood on, a constant stream of gutter water flowed downstream and accumulated at the edge of the footpath. It continued flowing throughout the 12-minute speech that began at 4.25 pm. Swaraj attacked the Congress government, saying they simply made policies sitting in air-conditioned offices but had failed to implement them.

“People in Dharavi are suffering from pollution and health hazards, while the Congress government in Maharashtra prepared yojnas sitting in AC offices,” she said. She spoke of the US government, which had earlier refused a visa to PM Narendra Modi, but now welcomed him with open arms. She also referred to herself as a mother and daughter who wanted the development of Haryanvi people in Mumbai.

As she stepped down from the podium, her supporters noticed the unclean water and asked locals to move aside to give her some space to walk. As muck and filthy water had accumulated a few feet away, Swaraj had to jump over the small stream to reach her vehicle.

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