Total sanitation day: No toilets for 55.14 pc houses in Mandya dist

Open defecation prevalent in rural areas

Even as programmes are being held as part of ‘Total Sanitation Day’ on Monday, the people of the district are yet to realise the importance of having a toilet for their families.

Ironically, only 44.85 per cent of the families of the district have toilet of their own and consider it as a self respect.

It has literally become a challenge for the government to ward off the practice of open defecation, which is prevalent in the rural areas and maintain cleanliness and hygiene. Even today, women residing in rural areas have no other option but to control their bowel movements well before the dawn or after the dusk.

Though sampoorna swatchatha andolana had begun in 2005 itself in the district it was not a success. Now, it is being reintroduced with a new scheme named ‘Nirmala Bharatha Abhiyana’ in the year 2012.

There are 1,369 villages in the 232 gram panchayat limits of the district, but  the scheme has achieved 100 per cent success only in the government schools. The anganwadi centres being run in the private buildings too are dependent on the open fields to attend
nature’s call.

Only after an elaborate survey involving anganwadi and Asha workers, it has come to light that a large proportion of the population do not have separate toilets for their families. After this survey now it has been confirmed that the gram panchayat have been showing wrong statistics.

Though streetplays, documentaries, distribution of handbills related to sanitation programme has been taken to the people, it has failed to achieve desired results, explain the department.

According to Siddalingamurthy, DRDA director, people spend thousands of rupees to purchase a mobile phone or for festivals, but do not even think of constructing a toilet. Steps have been taken to convince them and government too has been giving incentives, the communities should cooperate and make the scheme a success, he added.

Toilet at Rs 10,000

The government has been presenting an incentive of Rs 4,700 under Nirmala Bharatha Abhiyana to construct separate toilets for small and micro farmers, SC/ST families, physically challenged, landless labourers, women chiefs and for families below poverty line.

Under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, each employee is liable to get Rs 4,500 for 26 man days and Rs 800 from the beneficiaries will total to Rs 10,000.

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