VV-PACS Correspondent Mister Alam reports from Juniyar village, Nalanda District in Bihar where an overflowing drain has become the breeding ground for illnesses jeopardizing the health and safety of families in 400 houses. You can help this community get a clean living environment today.
Call to Action: Please call the Block Development Officer of Hilsa Block on +91 9431818641 and ask him to ensure that this drain gets fixed immediately.
For the past decade Lalu Devi and her family have lived with the unbearable stench of the drain that runs by their house. On many days, when it overflows, the water enters her house and the houses of her neighbours. Water-borne infections now run rampant in the village, especially during monsoons. Lalu Devi says her husband falls sick every few months.
Not too far lives Dr. Kedar Singh who runs a small clinic out of his house. Having tried repeatedly to solve this problem with the community, he has now entrusted CC Alam and his camera with the responsibility of getting the drain fixed. He shares:
"They (patients) have to face many problems while coming here over a wooden plank. I have tried to repair this wooden plank many times but I couldn't repair it. I also met the village head twice and told him about the drain. He said he couldn't repair it."
Others in the community re-iterate how the local administration has washed its hands off the problem. Legally, the Indian State is responsible to provide water and sanitation facilities to communities across India. The implementation may vary in each state but ultimately, the Village Council; Municipal Council and Block level administration hold the task.
Recent surveys across India find that Bihar has abysmal numbers to report when it comes to access to toilets or drainage. For every 1000 houses, close to 700 do not have toilets. Only 32% houses across rural India have access to proper garbage disposal; Bihar ranks one of the lowest on this too. (http://www.downtoearth.org.in/content/no-latrines-and-drinking-water-half-india-finds-survey)
Today however, the community of Juniyar are asking for a change. They have come forward and want to hold accountable government officials and their village head. Support them, all you have to do is, pick up a phone and dial the above number.
About the Partnership: The Poorest Areas Civil Society (PACS) Programme and Video Volunteers have come together to create the Community Correspondents Network. The videos generated by the network will be able to highlight voices from the margins, providing skills to social communicators to provide advocacy tools to community based organisations.
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