New Delhi: The government today announced allocation of Rs 11,300 crore for both rural and urban areas for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Centre's biggest drive to improve sanitation and cleanliness across the country.
The Budget 2016-17 has earmarked Rs 9,000 crore for rural areas, while Rs 2,300 crore for the urban areas.
"This (cleanliness) subject was very close to the heart of the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi. The government has allocated Rs 9,000 crore for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (for rural areas)," Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said while presenting the general Budget for 2016-17 in Lok Sahha.
For urban areas, the government allocated Rs 2,300 crore to implement the mission.
Launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 2, 2014 on Gandhi's 145th birth anniversary, the mission is a national campaign, covering 4,041 statutory cities and towns.
For the "first time" since independence, Jaitley said the Parliament held a comprehensive debate on sanitation.
"This has become a topic of discussion in almost every home. We have introduced ranking of urban areas in sanitation which has resulted in constructive competition among towns and cities," he said.