The Government of India stated in October 2019 that 9.5 crore toilets were made across the country and India is Open Defecation Free (ODF) now. But the reality is a little different.
Our correspondent Nanu Kumari from Sitamarhi, Bihar, found that in Sonbarsa Block, Bagaha Panchayat, Murha Chhataun village, with a population of 1061 (as per the Population Census 2011) do not have access to toilets.
The Joint Monitoring Program (JMP) in their July 2021 report stated that at least 15% of total population in India defecates in the open. Another survey from The National Annual Rural Sanitation, 2019-2020 says 0.8% of the population in rural areas practices open defecation.
The aforementioned village is extremely poor and they have no financial resources to make toilets on their own. Most of them are landless and daily wage workers. Despite the hurdles of open defecation they are facing, they simply can not afford a concrete toilet with septic tanks. They have the fear of snake bites, had to face rude neighbours, venturing in darkness etc for their daily ablutions.
If you have sanitised toilets, the country’s health indicators will increase, there will be less diarrhoea, malaria and other related ailments. The Community Correspondent Nanu Kumari is talking to the Block officials now to arrange for financial assistance to construct toilets. Hope the residents of Murha Chhataun village do not have to face trouble and discomfort in their daily lives, this is their basic civil rights.
In this video of UPS Manwan Awoora school, Kupwara, Kashmir, the community correspondent Pir Azhar shows us that there are nine classes for 250 students, and due to lack of space, the lower primary classes are held outside in the open. Also the school has only 7 teachers.