May 13, 2017 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
New Delhi: Its like great cry little wool situation for the central government as 60% of the toilets built by the government under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan don’t have proper water supply, rendering them unusable, a government survey has found.
As reported by the media the Sample Survey Office found that while the country’s sanitation infrastructure has seen a slight improvement, a lot is still left to be desired.Since the NDA took charge in 2014, around 3.5 crore new toilets have been built using government subsidy, which is double the 2001 numbers.
The improvement in sanitation coverage was a result of the government’s decision to give a subsidy of ₹9,000 to poor households and ₹3,000 to others for toilet construction, with an aim to ensure that every house has a toilet by the next general elections, reads a quote from a report published in an English weekly.
As per the survey it seems that it was all about beating the air and no work as Around 55.4% of people in villages are still opting for open defecation in the absence of water supply and proper drain to age in the toilets, the Sample Survey Office found in a survey of over one lakh households. In cities, 7.5% of the population defecated in the open.
The survey’s findings highlight the hygiene-related risks the limited sanitation coverage poses the 833 million people living in villages and the 377 million residing in cities.
In the past, there have been instances of people using newlybuilt toilets as storerooms and kitchen in parts of Madhya Pradesh and UP in the absence of water and a proper drainage. The survey also pointed out that the number of rural households with a toilet have increased but their percentage in cities has fallen primarily because of a rise in rural to urban migration owing to farm sector distress in the last three years, said the media sources.
Ramon Magsyasay awardee social activist Bezwada Wilson said the Swachh Bharat mission failed to take a note of manual scavenging. “The toilets are being built without any cleaners,” he said.
Furthermore, the survey conducted in states like Assam, Punjab and Odisha found that no agency was appointed for cleaning even the community toilets built under the mission, notes Hindustan Times (HT).
The government’s first big toilet survey found that 40% of toilets in villages were not connected to a drainage system.In majority of these villages, the survey said, the toilet waste was being released directly into local water bodies, thereby polluting the limited water resources.