Beginning Wednesday, some 450 gifts received by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at home and abroad will be auctioned over three days in his home state of Gujarat to raise funds for the government's ambitious Clean Ganga mission.
"All the gifts received by the PM were duly deposited in the toshakhana (treasury). Just as he auctioned gifts during his tenure as Gujarat chief minister for educating the girl child, the Surat auction will spread awareness about the need to clean the Ganga," a senior official said.
The proceeds from the auction of PM's gifts will be deposited with the Namami Gange (obeisance to Ganga) fund, with more such events planned in other parts of the country.
The fund is part of the Clean Ganga Mission announced by Modi in September and is part of the Integrated Ganga Conservation Mission set up with seed money of Rs 2,037 crore.
The auction organised by the Gujarat government in Surat will also see CM Anandiben Patel's gifts go under the hammer.
Standing on the banks of the holy river in Varanasi, which he represents in the Lok Sabha, the Prime Minister had promised to clean the Ganga which successive governments have failed to do after spending hundreds of crores of rupees.
On May 22, four days before he left for Delhi to be sworn in as the PM, Modi donated Rs 21 lakh from his personal savings towards creating a fund to educate the daughters of drivers and peons employed with the government. In his 13 years as Gujarat CM, Modi raised Rs 95 crore for the girl child.