New Delhi (India), October 12: Ahead of the Swachh Bharat Diwas, The Social Lab (TSL) organized Plog Run in New Delhi. The event was supported by marquee brands like Pepsico India, Varun Beverages Limited, Zomato, Star Factory and Chaayos. Aligned with the Government of India’s Swachh Bharat Mission initiative, the Plog run 2023 was ﬂagged oﬀ at Jawahar Lal Nehru Stadium by Shri Meenakhi Lekhi, Honourable Minister of State for External Aﬀairs and Culture and Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Honourable Minister of State for Consumer Aﬀairs, Food and Public Distribution and Environment, Forest and Climate, Government of India.
Plog Run 2023 was launched with great enthusiasm and support from dignitaries like Shri Meenakhi Lekhi, Honourable Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture, and Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Honorable Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, and Environment, Forest and Climate, Government of India. The event saw active participation from more than 1000 dedicated employees and volunteers.
The event was graced by the presence of notable figures, including HE Freddy Svane, Ambassador of Denmark to India, Shri Ahmed Elsheikh, President of PepsiCo India, Smt. Garima Singh, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer at PepsiCo India, Shri Rajesh Chawla, Chief Finance Officer for India at Varun Beverages, Shri Rakesh Ranjan, CEO of Food Delivery at Zomato, Shri Sahil Arora, CEO of TSL, Smt. Apoorva Sharma, Partner at TSL, and Shri Adesh Gupta, Director of the Advisory Board at TSL.
In alignment with the Government of India’s Swachh Bharat Mission campaign, the run was organized at Meharchand Market in Delhi and covered a distance of 4 kilometers. This initiative aimed to promote cleanliness and a healthier environment by encouraging participants to pick up litter while running, combining fitness with environmental responsibility.
Plog Run 2023 extended its impact across eight cities in India, with more than 5000 individuals taking part in the event and collectively covering a remarkable 30 kilometers. This widespread participation demonstrated a strong commitment to the cause and a shared vision of contributing to a cleaner and greener India.
With Fit India Movement at its core, this purposeful run serves as a platform to educate the public about plastic circularity and drive behavioral change. This year’s Plog Run garnered enthusiastic participation from over 500 volunteers, including volunteers and employees as they jogged and simultaneously picked up plastic waste. The Plog Run allows participants to witness the consequences of littering and becoming passionate advocates for change towards a cleaner and healthier India. Plastic waste collected during the Plog Run will undergo segregation and recycling processes to build useful items from the waste, ensuring that it does not end up in landﬁll.
Inaugurating the All India Plog Run for, Smt Meenakshi Lekhi, Hon’ble Minister of State for External Aﬀairs and Culture said “India is leading towards a new development story but it would be incomplete if we are unable to focus on Cleanliness and keep our surroundings clean. Today we are inaugurating Plog Run 2023 across India, I urge everyone to be a part of this initiative and help keep the nation clean. I would like to thank The Social Lab and its partners for not only spreading awareness on the topic but also making our people a part of it. Plog Run is the best way to keep yourself ﬁt and yet support the nation with your eﬀorts towards cleanliness.”
Addressing the gathering, Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Honorable Minister of State for Consumer Aﬀairs, Food and Public Distribution and Environment, Forest and Climate, Government of India said, “I am delighted to be a part of the Plog Run event, which stands as a shining example of the convergence of ﬁtness and environmental consciousness. This initiative resonates deeply with our government’scommitment to promoting a cleaner India through the Swachh Bharat Mission, empowering citizens to take ownership of their surroundings. I would like to congratulate The Social Lab (TSL) for organizing such an event and promoting the agenda of cleanliness.”
Commenting on the partnership, Sahil Arora, CEO, The Social Lab (TSL) said, “Plog Run is a wonderful fusion of ﬁtness and environmental responsibility, gaining popularity as a fun and impactful way to contribute to a cleaner planet. We are honoured to receive support from MOEF&CC, Swachh Bharat Mission, Pepsico India, Varun Beverages, Zomato, Chayoos and other partners who have come forward to support this cause and take a step towards being Climate positive.”
Speaking on the occasion, Shri Ahmed ELsheikh, President- PepsiCo India, said, “Guided by our ‘Winning with pep+’ philosophy, PepsiCo India’s participation in the annual Plog Run is a testimony of our eﬀorts towards creating a world where plastic never becomes waste. We are happy to extend our continued support to TSL for this year’s Plog Run, creating awareness on plastic circularity in alignment to Government’s vision of ‘Swachh Bharat’. We were thrilled to witness the remarkable surge in enthusiastic participation from volunteers and other corporates that reinforces our belief in collective action creating signiﬁcant positive impact.”
Speaking on the initiative, Rajesh Chawla, Chief Finance Oﬃcer, India, Varun Beverages Limited, said, “The Plog Run is a spectacular showcase of the synergy between physical ﬁtness and environment responsibility. We congratulate the organizers for the continued success of the initiative and are delighted to join hands with The Social Lab (TSL) this year to provide our contribution to the cause. such initiatives go a long way towards driving the right message and creating mass awareness on plastic waste management to build a cleaner India. VBL is commiaed towards creating a positive impact and strive for achieving its environment and net zero commitment.”
Speaking on the occasion, Anjalli Ravi Kumar, Chief Sustainability Oﬃcer, Zomato said “Sustainability is at the core of Zomato’s business strategy and is a key guiding principle for all initiatives we undertake. Our eﬀorts in this direction are focused on addressing plastic pollution, including ‘no cutlery required’ as a default option on the Zomato application and providing plastic neutral deliveries through voluntary recycling. We are thrilled to support this plog run. This is also an endeavour on our part to complement the Government of India’s ‘Swachh Bharat Mission’ initiative”
“Commenting on the Initiative, Adesh Gupta, Director-Advisory Board, TSL said “Plogging is a ﬁtness craze that ﬁrst began in Sweden and is gaining popularity in the India. The word plogging comes from jogging and “plocka upp,” the Swedish word for ‘pick-up’. We are proud to be the hosts for the event and wish to have further collaborations from the private sector for this noble cause”
Besides Delhi, TSL will be organizing Plog runs in several states across India including Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Karnataka and Telangana and Karnataka witnessing participation from over 5000 volunteers to collect plastic waste across public areas. As part of this initiative, The Social Lab (TSL) along with its partners PepsiCo India, Varun Beverages, Zomato, Chaayos aims to collect, segregate, and recycle post-consumer plastic waste ensuring zero percent plastic waste lands into landﬁlls.
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