New Delhi: To mark the 18th Foundation Day of Jharkhand on November 15, Chief Minister Raghubar Das to announce the state open defecation free and release a coffee table book based on how the state has successfully climbed the ODF ladder. Last year, on October 2, 2017, CM Raghubar Das announced that the urban parts of the state free from open defecation and said that by next year, the state will be able to make its rural counterparts ODF as well. From 2014 to 2018, Jharkhand has achieved a lot – from having sanitation coverage of mere 28 per cent to moving it up to 100 per cent today, the state has made a positive difference in achieving Swachh Bharat Mission goals.
An official release quoting the Chief Minister Raghubar Das said,
On November 15, on Jharkhand’s foundation day, the Chief Minister will announce the state free from open defecation and will inaugurate several infrastructural projects that will help up the swachh quotient of the state such as solid waste management plant for Pakur and Sahebganj. Along with it, CM will also be felicitating 10 people from the state for their swachh contribution.
A few days ago, even Union Minister for Drinking Water and Sanitation Uma Bharati said that with the present rate of sanitation coverage in Jharkhand, the state will be able to become Open Defecation Free (ODF) on November 15.
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Jharkhand’s Swachh Report Card
The state’s swachh game was not always strong, after three years into the cleanliness mission, Jharkhand was able to declare only Ramgarh as the first district in the state to get the ODF tag. But today, more than 33 lakh toilets in the rural areas of the state has been constructed, more than 28,000 villages and 21 districts have become open defecation free (ODF).
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In fact, the ODF journey in rural areas of the state was full of challenges. Jharkhand, being an economically backward state (according to Raghuram Rajan Committee Report of 2013), the task of convincing people to stop open defecation at the cost of constructing a toilet was a daunting job, according to state’s swachh official.
But the state managed to pass all the hurdles successfully. On January 26, 2018, Jharkhand went on a mission to construct three lakh toilets in a month, and in a mere 11 days the state broke its earlier record of constructing 1 lakh toilets.
Moreover, on the 19th of every month across all the schools in Jharkhand, Swachhta Diwas is organised in a bid to create awareness on Swachh Bharat Mission and motivate people to contribute. Whereas, on the 2nd of every month, a Swachhata Sabha is organised across all gram panchayats where discussions on toilet construction status, usage status and ODF status are held so that residents are up to speed with developments on the sanitation front.
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.