Food safety and healthy diets are critical in the context of India's high burden of foodborne diseases, under-nutrition, micro-nutrient deficiencies and growing incidence of obesity and non-communicable diseases (NCDs). It is in this context that 'Eat Right India' movement has been launched by Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The 'Eat Right India' movement is a collective effort of key stakeholders and citizens and is aligned with Government's recent focus on public health through its three key programmes, namely 'Ayushman Bharat', 'Swachh Bharat Mission', and 'POSHAN Abhiyaan'. 'Swasth Bharat Yatra', a pan-India Cyclothon, is a key element of the Eat Right India movement. Swasth Bharat Yatra would provide the trigger for cascading the message of Eat Right India to every corner of the country.
Inspired by the Hon'ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of leveraging 150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, various activities under the 'Eat Right India' movement are planned in two phases of 150 days each. In the first phase culminating in end-January, 2019, activities at the National/State level such as Eat Right Melas, Conventions and National Poster Competition are planned. The Swasth Bharat Yatra is also planned in the first phase. In the 2nd phase, which will commence immediately thereafter, events and outreach activities will be organized by the States/UTs to reach out to various stakeholders and the citizens up to district and sub-district level.
Swasth Bharat Yatra, a Pan India Cycle rally, is inspired by Mahatma Gandhi's Dandi March and 'Salt Satyagraha' of 1930. Through his tireless yatras, Mahatma Gandhi led the nation towards freedom from Colonial Rule. This yatra would also lead the nation towards freedom from diseases by cascading the message of Eat Right India to every corner of the country.
The 'Swasth Bharat Yatra' will be flagged off on 16th October, 2018 (World Food Day) on six tracks from six different locations and cover almost all States/UTs, culminating at New Delhi on 27th January, 2019. It will comprise of a team of 150 'Volunteer-Cyclists' and the convoy would include an 'Eat Right Mobile Unit' and a Mobile Food Testing Unit. The Convoy would make 'stop-overs' in cities and towns and have transit 'halts' and activities in over 2000 locations spread over 100 days.
The 150 Volunteer Cyclists will cover 50-60 kilometres, halting at 2-3 towns and cities on the way. Volunteer Cyclists will hand over the symbolic relay baton to the next batch at the stopover points and return. The last batch of cyclists will converge in New Delhi on 27th January 2019, concluding the Swasth Bharat Yatra in the first phase of the Eat Right India movement. Cyclists will cycle every alternate days and Activations will be organized in-transit and on the interim days when the baton is relayed to the next batch of cyclists at a flag off event.