One may call it a new revenue stream for the Narendra Modi government. Nearly Rs 600 crore, equivalent to the budget of the Chandrayaan 3-mission, has been earned till August by the Centre by—believe it or not—selling scrap in the form of weeded-out files, condemned office equipment, and obsolete vehicles. This figure may well cross Rs 1,000 crore by October.
The government will hold its Special Campaign 3.0 from October 2 till October 31, with a further focus on cleanliness and reducing pendency in the administration. A top government official told News18 that while Rs 371 crore was earned from a similar campaign run last year in October, the target this time in the third edition is hitting almost Rs 400 crore in revenue. The government had earned Rs 62 crore from the first such exercise in October 2021. Since the last campaign ended in November, the government institutionalised the cleanliness drive as a constant exercise and has earned nearly Rs 20 crore each month.
This has resulted in clean corridors in government offices, steel almirahs full of files being cleared, and condemned vehicles being auctioned off. Figures with News18 show that nearly 31 lakh government files have been weeded out ever since the campaign first began around two years ago. The amount of space freed in government offices is a whopping 185 lakh square feet as of date, details with News18 show. While a record 90 lakh square feet of space out of this was freed just during the Special Campaign 2.0 in October last year, the target this October is to free at least 100 lakh square feet.
The government had covered 1.01 lakh office sites in the last campaign and is planning to target nearly 1.5 lakh office sites in the third edition.
“The success of Special Campaign 2.0 has encouraged the government to plan a bigger campaign this year. All Ministries and departments of Government of India will participate in the campaign. A preparatory phase will be held from September 15 to September 30 and the implementation phase will be from October 2 till October 31. It envisages saturation of Swachhata in all offices of ministries and departments. Special attention shall be paid to field/outstation offices responsible for service delivery or having public interface,” says a government order.
Minister of state for personnel Dr Jitendra Singh will announce the campaign on September 14 in Delhi, News18 has learnt.