New Delhi, Oct 3 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi was on Wednesday conferred the ‘Champions of the Earth’ award by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at a special ceremony in the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra here.
Receiving the award, the prime minister started out by thanking the United Nations Secretary General António Guterres for being present in India for the occasion.
“It is a great honour that this award is being given in India itself… It is an honour for all Indians. Indians are committed to save the environment,” Modi said. “This award is a result of India’s 1.25 billion strong population,” he added.
Presenting the award, Guterres said, “Many leaders understand climate change but Prime Minister Narendra Modi acts on it. The example of prime minister’s leadership is not being followed enough.” Guterres said that Modi has recognised the challenges of climate change and he understands the need of climate action.
Modi was honoured for taking ahead India’s commitment to preserve the environment and successfully implement the Swachh Bharat scheme.
“Climate and calamity are directly related to culture; if climate is not the focus of culture, calamity cannot be prevented. When I say ‘Sabka Saath,’ I also include nature in it,” Modi said.
Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron were named for the ‘Champions of the Earth’ award by the UN Environment programme (UNEP) under the Policy Leadership category.
The award announced on September 26, on the sidelines of 73rd UN General Assembly session in New York.