Swachh Warrior: 16-Year-Old Tamil Nadu Girl, The Sole Breadwinner Of Her Family, Helps Build Toilets In Her Village

Swachh Warrior: 16-Year-Old Tamil Nadu Girl, The Sole Breadwinner Of Her Family, Helps Build Toilets In Her Village

Jayalakshmi, a 16-year-old girl who studies in Class 12 and sells cashews to support her family, has motivated fellow villagers to give up open defecation and has managed to bring toilets to each household of her village in Pudukottai district of Tamil Nadu
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Swachh Warrior: 16-Year-Old Tamil Nadu Girl, The Sole Breadwinner Of Her Family, Helps Build Toilets In Her Village16-year-old Jayalakshmi was supported by a Tiruchirapalli based voluntary organization, in building individual household toilets for each family of her village in Tamil Nadu in order to prevent open defecation
Highlights
  • Jayalakshmi has been chosen for an educational tour to NASA
  • NGO Gramalaya reached out to Jayalakshmi to offer aid for travel to NASA
  • Jayalakshmi requested Gramalaya to help her build toilets in her village

New Delhi: At a young age of 16 years, Jayalakshmi wears many hats. She is a student of Class 12, sole bread-earner of her family, a tuition teacher for Class 8 and 9 students and a social worker. The resident of Thiruvalluvar Nagar village of Adhanakottai panchayat in Pudukottai district of Tamil Nadu, Jayalakshmi has helped in eradicating the practice of open defecation from her village by raising awareness and motivating her fellow villagers to build individual household toilets. Taking support from a Tiruchirapalli based voluntary organisation ‘Gramalaya’ that has been working towards sanitation and rural development since 1987, Jayalakshmi has managed to build 125 individual household toilets covering all families in her village.

Also Read: Meet ‘Zafira’, A Humanoid Robot That Ensures You Follow COVID-19 Precautionary Measures At Public Places

It all started when Jayalakshmi won an online competition conducted by a private organisation and got an opportunity to visit NASA (National Aeronautics And Space Administration) facility in the USA. She started receiving support from various people and organisations who offered to fund her visit to NASA. Gramalaya was one of the organisations that came forwards to help her realise her dream of visiting NASA. However, Jayalakshi requested S. Damodaran, Founder of Gramalaya to channelise the support offered towards building individual household toilets in her village. While speaking to NDTV, Jayalakshmi, whose trip to NASA has been postponed to the next year due to the pandemic, said,

For years, people in my village including myself and my family had to walk about two kilometres towards a forest for defecation. Of a total of 130 families in our hamlet, 125 did not have toilets. Girls and women especially faced many problems as we had to walk past a wine shop each time, we had to relieve ourselves in the open. Boys and men loiter around the wine shop all the time which used to make us very uncomfortable because of which many of us used to control ourselves to avoid going in the open. This used to cause stomach ache and headaches also.

Jayalakshmi added that she was already aware about Gramalaya and their hygiene programmes and so she took the opportunity to request the NGO to help construct toilets. She said that initially the villagers were hesitant and so she had to go door-to-door to talk to them and explain to them the benefit of using a toilet. Appreciating the efforts of Jayalakshmi, Mr. Damodaran said,

We got to know from the media that a poor girl was facing financial crunch to visit the USA. So, we approached her. She requested us to visit the village and lend our experience and funds in building toilets. When we reached her village, we found the village to be extremely backward with individual toilets in five households out of a total of 130 households. As Jayalakshmi told us that she has already got adequate funds for the NASA visit, we started the project of providing villagers with one good 4feetX8feet toilet per household.

Also Read: State-Run Outlets ‘Amma Canteens’ Resume Providing Free Food During The 12-Day COVID-19 Lockdown In 4 Tamil Nadu Districts

Mr. Damodaran further said that some households had built toilet under the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) but a lot of those were not functional or have been damaged by the cyclone.

According to Mr. Damodaran, the households have contributed about Rs. 5,000 worth of material and labour for each toilet and the rest of the fund has been aided by the NGO in association with Bank of America.

The people of Jayalakshmi’s village recognise her contribution in providing them with toilets. Deivanai, a 40-year-old women said that the toilets built by Gramalaya also has enough space for bathing. She said that the community is very happy and thankful to the young social worker. She said,

We are a five-member family including my three teenagers who are using this toilet. I am glad that now we don’t have to go to the forest area for defecation. We will maintain and use our household toilet.

Another resident Chinnathal, a 47-year-old woman thanked Jayalakshmi for her efforts and the NGO for their support. She highlighted that toilets are a basic need of the people and this simple thing alone can prove to be transformative in the future in terms of health and hygiene of the people in the village.

Jayalakshmi lives with her mother who is undergoing treatment for mental illness and her 13-year-old brother. The family of three receives some support from her uncle. Jayalakshmi who aspires to become a civil servant, currently does odd jobs, mostly engaged in processing and selling cashew. While signing off she said,

My father had abandoned us when I was little. My mother is suffering from a mental illness. In this struggle, I find inspiration in my teachers. They encourage me to keep going and strive for a better future. They also helped me get a passport. I want to study Law and join civil service in future. I want to change the situation of my village and many other villages like mine.

Also Read: Replacing Single-Use Plastic, One Leaf At A Time: This 20-Year-Old’s Invention Can Help Tackle The Rising Plastic Waste Crisis

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene

World

5,97,15,578Cases
2,00,80,229Active
3,82,27,326Recovered
14,08,023Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 191 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 5,97,15,578 and 14,08,023 have died; 2,00,80,229 are active cases and 3,82,27,326 have recovered as on November 25, 2020 at 3:43 am.

India

92,22,216 44376Cases
4,44,746 6079Active
86,42,771 37816Recovered
1,34,699 481Deaths
In India, there are 92,22,216 confirmed cases including 1,34,699 deaths. The number of active cases is 4,44,746 and 86,42,771 have recovered as on November 25, 2020 at 2:30 am.

State & District Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
DistrictCases
Mumbai45,478
Thane13,660
Pune9,920
Mumbai Suburban5,363
Aurangabad1,974
Nashik1,575
Raigad1,462
Palghar1,421
Solapur1,291
Jalgaon1,039
Akola757
Nagpur692
Kolhapur646
Satara629
Ratnagiri350
Amravati291
Dhule228
Hingoli208
Jalna201
Ahmednagar190
Nanded176
Yavatmal150
Sangli145
Latur139
Osmanabad125
Sindhudurg114
Buldhana88
Parbhani78
gondia69
Beed54
Nandurbar42
Gadchiroli42
Bhandara41
Chandrapur32
Washim13
Wardha11

17,89,800 5,439

84,238 1,323

16,58,879 4,086

46,683 30

DistrictCases
Udupi1,176
Kalaburagi669
Yadgir538
Bengaluru Urban529
Raichur369
Mandya346
Belagavi337
Bidar219
Hassan205
Davangere204
Vijayapura201
Dakshina Kannada179
Chikkaballapura149
Mysuru107
Bagalkote103
Uttara Kannada95
Shivamogga67
Dharwad61
Ballari60
Gadag45
Bengaluru Rural40
Tumakuru36
Kolar29
Haveri24
Chikkamagaluru19
Chitradurga14
Koppal5
Kodagu4
Ramanagara3
Chamarajanagara0

8,76,425 1,870

24,631 96

8,40,099 1,949

11,695 17

DistrictCases
Kurnool795
Krishna557
Guntur511
Anantapur428
East Godavari356
Chittoor319
Sri Potti Sriramulu Nell*296
Y.S.R.205
West Godavari199
Srikakulam183
Prakasam104
Visakhapatnam103
Vizianagaram23

8,63,843 1,085

13,024 370

8,43,863 1,447

6,956 8

DistrictCases
Chennai23,324
Chengalpattu1,314
Thiruvallur774
Villupuram509
Kanchipuram503
Tiruvannamalai496
Cuddalore477
Ariyalur444
Tirunelveli433
Tuticorin333
Kallakurichi324
Madurai322
Salem258
Coimbatore188
Virudhunagar185
Dindigul175
Perambalur133
Ranipet133
Thanjavur130
Theni129
Tiruchirappalli119
Ramanathapuram119
Tiruppur116
Kanniyakumari110
Tenkasi103
Nagapattinam99
Karur88
Namakkal83
Erode75
Vellore71
Thiruvarur67
Pudukkottai53
Sivaganga46
Tirupathur45
Krishnagiri43
The Nilgiris17
Dharmapuri15

7,73,176 1,557

11,875 370

7,49,662 1,910

11,639 17

DistrictCases
Kannur357
Kasaragod333
Palakkad224
Malappuram119
Kollam118
Thrissur106
Thiruvananthapuram104
Pathanamthitta98
Kozhikode90
Alappuzha76
Kottayam73
Ernakulam60
Idukki40
Wayanad36

5,71,872 5,420

64,539 247

5,05,238 5,149

2,095 24

DistrictCases
North West5,463
Central4,817
West4,768
New Delhi3,405
North3,059
East2,472
South East2,446
South West2,391
South2,329
North East1,914
Shahdara1,580

5,40,541 6,224

38,501 1,172

4,93,419 4,943

8,621 109

DistrictCases
Gautam Buddha Nagar1,119
Agra933
Ghaziabad794
Meerut504
Lucknow386
Saharanpur298
Kanpur Nagar286
Moradabad252
Varanasi243
Hapur225
Aligarh215
Basti214
Amethi206
Rampur203
Jaunpur194
Firozabad190
Barabanki168
Gorakhpur166
Bulandshahr166
Siddharth Nagar159
Ghazipur159
Bijnor157
Deoria143
Azamgarh138
Sant Kabeer Nagar132
Mathura129
Ayodhya120
Muzaffarnagar117
Sambhal116
Sultanpur97
Ambedkar Nagar92
Maharajganj85
Amroha80
Rae Bareli78
Bahraich73
Kheri72
Kannauj69
Baghpat68
Kushi Nagar67
Bhadohi60
Ballia60
Gonda59
Etah52
Hardoi49
Balrampur49
Mau48
Mainpuri46
Etawah46
Hathras43
Unnao42
Jalaun41
Jhansi41
Shamli40
Chandauli38
Auraiya37
Farrukhabad36
Sitapur32
Prayagraj30
Banda27
Shahjahanpur25
Shravasti23
Budaun23
Mirzapur22
Bareilly17
Kasganj16
Pratapgarh15
Pilibhit15
Sonbhadra10
Kaushambi6
Kanpur Dehat4
Chitrakoot4
Lalitpur3
Hamirpur3
Mahoba3
Fatehpur3

5,31,050 2,217

23,928 152

4,99,507 2,032

7,615 33

DistrictCases
Kolkata2,777
Howrah1,435
24 Paraganas North1,031
Hooghly604
24 Paraganas South281
Maldah235
Dinajpur Uttar216
Coochbehar210
Birbhum206
Medinipur West159
Medinipur East153
Nadia139
Purba Bardhaman130
Murshidabad125
Bankura116
Darjeeling97
Jalpaiguri88
Paschim Bardhaman70
Purulia66
Dinajpur Dakshin50
Alipurduar39
Kalimpong18
Jhargram9

4,63,463 3,545

24,880 150

4,30,462 3,646

8,121 49

DistrictCases
Ganjam581
Jajapur322
Khordha238
Baleshwar190
Kendrapara164
Cuttack155
Bhadrak137
Balangir129
Puri103
Sundargarh102
Jagatsinghapur91
Nayagarh86
Mayurbhanj73
Nuapada69
Gajapati61
Dhenkanal36
Boudh34
Kendujhar34
Deogarh33
Kalahandi33
Sonepur29
Kandhamal28
Anugul26
Malkangiri20
Bargarh16
Koraput16
Sambalpur16
Jharsuguda8
Nabarangpur2
Rayagada2

3,15,271 642

6,226 20

3,07,374 648

1,671 14

DistrictCases
Hyderabad2,475
Ranga Reddy183
Suryapet87
Jagitial77
Nizamabad76
MedchalMalkajgiri75
Mancherial43
YadadriBhuvanagiri40
Jogulamba Gadwal40
Vikarabad40
Nalgonda33
Warangal Urban32
Mahabubnagar30
Sangareddy26
Khammam26
Adilabad22
Nirmal21
Karimnagar17
RajannaSircilla16
Medak11
Kamareddy11
Mahabubabad10
Jayashankar Bhupalapally9
Nagarkurnool8
Kumuram Bheem Asifabad8
Jangoan8
Siddipet7
Peddapalli5
Bhadradri Kothagudem5
Warangal Rural4
Mulugu3
Narayanpet3
Wanaparthy1

2,66,042 993

10,886 161

2,53,715 1,150

1,441 4

DistrictCases
Jaipur2,177
Jodhpur1,748
Udaipur724
Bharatpur563
Kota503
Nagaur500
Ajmer379
Dungarpur374
Pali352
Jhalawar329
Bhilwara250
Sikar231
Chittorgarh188
Tonk171
Jalore164
Rajsamand140
Sirohi130
Bikaner112
Banswara91
Alwar90
Churu81
Jhunjhunu64
Dausa61
Dholpur60
Baran59
Jaisalmer53
Barmer34
Hanumangarh31
SawaiMadhopur26
Karauli17
Pratapgarh14
Ganganagar8
Bundi5

2,50,482 3,314

25,197 1,081

2,23,085 2,214

2,200 19

DistrictCases
Patna279
Bhagalpur266
Rohtas256
Khagaria253
Begusarai243
Madhubani199
Munger188
Jehanabad178
Katihar175
Darbhanga143
Samastipur139
Siwan139
PurbiChamparan138
Purnia135
Banka134
Buxar134
Nalanda123
Gopalganj123
Nawada122
Sheikhpura118
Gaya115
Kaimur (bhabua)105
Bhojpur103
Saran101
Muzaffarpur96
Saharsa88
Supaul87
Vaishali87
Madhepura82
Kishanganj75
Aurangabad75
Sitamarhi73
Lakhisarai72
Araria68
Pashchim Champaran57
Arwal52
Jamui47
Sheohar20

2,30,845 751

4,897 103

2,24,715 642

1,233 6

DistrictCases
Bilaspur100
Korba100
Mungeli87
Baloda Bazar85
Jashpur77
Janjgir-Champa56
Mahasamund54
Rajnandgaon52
Kabirdham52
Raigarh47
Raipur46
Balod41
Korea39
Durg31
Bemetara21
Kanker19
Balrampur17
Surguja14
Gariyaband10
Surajpur9
Dhamtari6
Bijapur2
Bastar2
Dantewada0
Kondagaon0
Narayanpur0
Sukma0

2,27,326 1,829

22,815 889

2,01,744 919

2,767 21

DistrictCases
Gurugram2,950
Faridabad867
Sonipat404
Rohtak145
Palwal120
Jhajjar114
Karnal104
Hisar98
Ambala93
Panipat78
Nuh68
Bhiwani60
Rewari56
Kurukshetra55
Sirsa50
Kaithal48
Mahendragarh47
CharkiDadri43
Panchkula39
Fatehabad38
Jind38
Yamunanagar19

2,22,292 2,329

20,765 353

1,99,278 1,943

2,249 33

DistrictCases
Kamrup Metro276
Golaghat203
Nagaon143
Hojai89
Dima Hasao86
Karimganj85
Tinsukia84
Cachar80
Dibrugarh61
Hailakandi57
Lakhimpur57
Marigaon50
Dhemaji47
Kamrup42
Kokrajhar37
Dhubri30
Charaideo29
Barpeta28
Udalguri28
Sonitpur27
Jorhat24
Nalbari23
Darrang20
Sivasagar20
Goalpara19
Biswanath16
Baksa14
KarbiAnglong13
Bongaigaon12
Chirang6
West KarbiAnglong5
South SalmaraMancachar4
Majuli2

2,11,839 157

3,214 35

2,07,649 121

976 1

DistrictCases
Ahmadabad17,125
Surat2,311
Vadodara1,555
Gandhinagar410
Mahesana159
Banas Kantha147
Bhavnagar146
Rajkot135
Arvalli134
Mahisagar125
Anand107
PanchMahals107
Patan105
SabarKantha101
Kachchh99
Kheda98
Jamnagar63
Bharuch56
Botad55
Surendranagar55
Valsad47
GirSomnath45
Dohad43
Chhotaudepur37
Naysari35
Junagadh31
Narmada25
DevbhumiDwarka22
Amreli16
Porbandar11
Tapi6
Dang5
Morbi4

2,00,409 1,510

14,044 208

1,82,473 1,286

3,892 16

DistrictCases
Indore3,839
Bhopal1,880
Ujjain799
Burhanpur351
Neemuch319
Jabalpur276
East Nimar266
Sagar228
Gwalior211
Khargone196
Dewas140
Dhar132
Mandsaur112
Morena109
Bhind87
Raisen71
Barwani60
Ratlam51
Rewa39
Shajapur39
Hoshangabad37
Vidisha37
Chhatarpur35
Betul35
Rajgarh31
Dindori29
Sheopur26
Damoh26
Satna24
Anuppur22
Panna20
Tikamgarh18
Sidhi17
Narsinghpur17
Chhindwara16
Agar Malwa15
Mandla15
Shivpuri15
Jhabua14
Shandol14
Singrauli13
Ashoknagar13
Datia12
Sehore12
Umaria10
Balaghat9
Guna8
Harda4
Alirajpur3
Katni3
Seoni2
Niwari0

1,96,511 1,766

12,979 643

1,80,349 1,112

3,183 11

DistrictCases
Amritsar485
Jalandhar297
Ludhiana293
Tarn Taran163
Gurdaspur154
Hoshiarpur140
S.A.S Nagar137
Patiala132
Sangrur107
Shahid Bhagat Singh Nagar (Nawanshahr)99
Pathankot86
Rupnagar (Ropar)74
Faridkot74
Sri Muktsar Sahib71
Moga65
Bathinda60
Fatehgarh Sahib57
Fazilka53
Firozepur50
Kapurthala44
Mansa31
Barnala25

1,47,665 608

6,834 147

1,36,178 439

4,653 22

DistrictCases
East Singhbum170
Ranchi148
Hazaribagh110
Garhwa80
Ramgarh75
Koderma58
Simdega48
Dhanbad32
Gumla28
Palamu27
West Singhbhum21
SaraikelaKharsawan20
Giridih19
Bokaro16
Latehar14
Khunti10
Lohardaga8
Deoghar5
Dumka5
Pakur4
Jamtara2
Godda2
Chatra1
Sahebganj0

1,07,921 233

2,242 40

1,04,724 191

955 2

DistrictCases
Anantnag395
Srinagar300
Kulgam295
Baramulla271
Shopian255
Kupwara231
Bandipora175
Udhampur155
Ramban151
Jammu138
Budgam110
Pulwama108
Kathua53
Rajouri39
Ganderbal37
Poonch35
Doda27
Reasi26
Samba25
Kishtwar10
Mirpur0
Muzaffarabad0

1,07,330 431

5,357 74

1,00,322 495

1,651 10

DistrictCases
Dehradun370
Nainital323
Tehri Garhwal110
Haridwar94
Udam Singh Nagar83
Almora71
Champawat45
Pithoragarh43
Chamoli36
PauriGarhwal36
Bageshwar31
Rudraprayag30
Uttar Kashi24

72,160 528

4,638 340

66,349 177

1,173 11

DistrictCases
South Goa69
North Goa57

47,068 167

1,221 80

45,168 85

679 2

DistrictCases
Pondicherry111
Mahe4
Karaikal2
Yanam0

36,769 51

489 38

35,671 89

609

DistrictCases
Hamirpur117
Kangra105
Una41
Solan32
Chamba29
Bilaspur21
Mandi21
Sirmaur11
Shimla10
Kullu4
Kinnaur2
Lahaul And Spiti0

35,729 948

7,150 470

28,007 466

572 12

DistrictCases
Dhalai196
Sepahijala174
Gomati74
South Tripura53
Unakoti49
West Tripura45
Khowai24
North Tripura14

32,528 35

790 37

31,368 72

370

DistrictCases
Churachandpur32
Kangpokpi26
Imphal West21
Thoubal18
Imphal East10
Tengnoupal9
Bishnupur7
Senapati6
Chandel5
Kamjong5
Ukhrul4
Jiribam3
Pherzawl3
Kakching2
Tamenglong2
Noney1

23,940 290

3,175 137

20,525 151

240 2

DistrictCases
Chandigarh313

16,848 79

1,128 11

15,455 66

265 2

DistrictCases
Changlang31
Papum Pare8
Lohit3
Namsai2
West Siang1
East Siang1
Upper Siang1
Tawang1
PakkeKessang1
West Kameng0
Upper Subansiri0
Tirap0
Siang0
Shi Yomi0
Anjaw0
Lower Subansiri0
Lower Dibang Valley0
Longding0
Leparada0
KurungKumey0
KraDaadi0
Kamle0
East Kameng0
Dibang Valley0
Lower Siang0

16,144 52

1,004 3

15,091 55

49

DistrictCases
East Khasi Hills22
West Garo Hills5
South West Garo Hills4
North Garo Hills1
West Jaintia Hills1
West Khasi Hills1
East Garo Hills0
East Jaintia Hills0
Ribhoi0
South Garo Hills0
South West Khasi Hills0

11,454 57

893 2

10,451 59

110

DistrictCases
Dimapur20
Mon8
Kohima7
Kiphire3
Tuensang3
Peren2
Phek1
Longleng0
Mokokchung0
Wokha0
Zunheboto0

10,931 79

1,473 29

9,397 50

61

DistrictCases
Kargil77
LehLadakh43

8,028 83

854 5

7,069 84

105 4

DistrictCases
East District3
South District3
North District0
West District0

4,777 41

238 8

4,437 31

102 2

DistrictCases
South Andamans33
Nicobars1
North And Middle Andaman1

4,667 11

142 0

4,464 11

61

DistrictCases
Kolasib11
Aizawl10
Mamit8
Lawngtlai2
Lunglei2
Saitual1
Champhai0
Hnahthial0
Khawzawl0
Saiha0
Serchhip0

3,745 35

442 60

3,298 95

5

DistrictCases
Dadra And Nagar Haveli20

3,325

37 3

3,286 3

2

DistrictCases
Lakshadweep District0

0

0 0

0

0

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World Toilet Day 2020: India Achieved Goal Of Having Toilets In Every House 11 Years Before Target, Says Jal Shakti Minister

On World Toilet Day 2020, Union Minister of Jal Shakti Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said India achieved United Nations' sustainable development goal of having toilets in every house by 2030 in 2019 only