New Delhi: The government of Jammu and Kashmir has turned down the request of implementing agencies to reduce the target of constructing individual household toilets from 60,000 TO 40,000, since the state has already achieved open defecation free (ODF) status. The Chief Secretary of Jammu and Kashmir government BVR Subrahmanyam, during the sixth state level apex committee meeting, has asked the authorities to meet the original target of constructing 60,000 individual household toilets (IHHTs) in urban areas under the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) in the state. The direction came after some officials from the implementing agencies submitted a request to the government for reducing the target to 40,000, since sanitation coverage in the urban areas has almost become 100 per cent, informed an official from Housing and Urban Development Department.
The state was declared ODF (Open Defecation Free) by the Governor Satya Pal Malik in September, a year before its original target of October 2019. A senior official of Housing and Urban Development Department said that 66 out of 80 Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) of the state have been certified ODF by the Quality Council of India (QCI) and the remaining ULBs which have been self-declared as ODF will be certified soon by QCI.
Since 2014, about 34,000 IHHTs and 800 community toilets or public toilets have been constructed under the programme till date. Nearly, 3000 IHHTs and 1350 Community Toilets are under construction at the moment, informed a spokesperson of the Swachh Bharat Mission of Jammu Division.
Sanitation coverage in all the ULBs of Jammu and Kashmir has been completed. But there are some places where we receive requests for building IHHTS from. However, there are no incidences of open defecation as those who do not have individual household toilets use community toilets.
He added that the Chief Secretary had asked them to identify such households that do not have an IHHT and increase awareness among people especially among the slum-dwellers about the process of applying for an IHHT and run campaigns on hygiene and importance of an IHHT.
During the meeting, Mr. Subrahmanyam said to the officials of the implementing agencies including, Housing and Urban Development Department, Finance Department, Planning Development & AND Monitoring Department, Rural Development Department, Srinagar Municipal Corporation, Jammu Municipal Corporation,
You have completed nearly 37,000 IHHTs, now focus on the remaining 23,000 and allocate these rationally across the ULBs and let these be beneficiary led.
The Apex Committee asked the departments to come up with a viable model for the construction of the remaining toilets and place the same before the committee in the next meeting, informed a statement from the government of Jammu and Kashmir.
NDTV – Dettol Banega Swachh India campaign lends support to the Government of India’s Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM). Helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan, the campaign aims to spread awareness about hygiene and sanitation, the importance of building toilets and making India open defecation free (ODF) by October 2019, a target set by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, when he launched Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in 2014. Over the years, the campaign has widened its scope to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and menstrual hygiene. The campaign has also focused extensively on marine pollution, clean Ganga Project and rejuvenation of Yamuna, two of India’s major river bodies.