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Realising that the large scale population was exposed to various kinds of diseases due to lack of sanitation facilities the government of India has advancing the earlier target of making India free from open defecation by 2022 to 2019 by launching a massive Swachh Bharat Mission. 2019 coincides with the 150th Birth Anniversary year of Mahatma Gandhi who considered sanitation more important than even Independence.
An Action plan has been drawn up to make India Open Defecation Free (ODF) by 2019, to keep villages clean through construction of individual, cluster & community toilets and through solid and liquid waste management with active participation of village Gram Panchayats (GPs). It also aims at enabling water tap make connection to households on demand by 2019.
Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan (NBA) will be restructured into the Swachh Bharat Mission with two sub-Missions - Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) and Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban).
Over 2.5 billion people mostly in rural areas across the world do not have proper sanitation facilities and over one billion people defecate in the open due to lack of proper toilet facilities. The situation is no better in our country where more than half of the population defecates in the open. It is well known that countries where open defecation is most widely practiced are the same countries with the highest numbers of under-five child deaths, high levels of under-nutrition and poverty, and large wealth disparities.
The Mission has following components:-
- Construction of Household Toilets,
- Community and Public Toilets,
- Solid Waste Management,
- Information, Education & Communication (IEC) and Public Awareness,
- Capacity Building and Administrative & Office Expenses (A&OE).
Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) have the following objectives:-
- Eliminate open defecation,
- Conversion of insanitary toilets to pour flush toilets,
- Eradication of manual scavenging,
- 100% collection and scientific processing/disposal reuse/recycle of Municipal Solid Waste,
- To bring about a behavioral change in people regarding healthy sanitation practices,
- Generate awareness among the citizens about sanitation and its linkages with public health.
- Strengthening of urban local bodies to design, execute and operate systems,
- To create enabling environment for private sector participation in Capital Expenditure and Operation & Maintenance (O&M) costs.
Swachh Bharat Mission (Rural) have the following objectives:-
- Bring about an improvement in the general quality of life in the rural areas.
- Accelerate sanitation coverage in rural areas to achieve the vision of Swachh Bharat by 2019 with all Gram Panchayats in the country attaining Nirmal status.
- Encourage cost effective and appropriate technologies for ecologically safe and sustainable sanitation.
- Motivate communities and Panchayati Raj Institutions promoting sustainable sanitation facilities through awareness creation and health education.
- Develop community managed environmental sanitation systems focusing on solid & liquid waste management for overall cleanliness in the rural areas.
Swachh Bharat is proposed to be achieved through:-
- Coverage of all rural households with IHHLs, cluster toilets, community toilets (including through PPP mode), construction of school and anganwadi toilets and SLWM activities in all Gram Panchayats;
- Creation of enhanced demand, convergent action through various agencies and stakeholders with triggering through enhanced IEC, Inter Personal Communication (IPC);
- Strengthening of implementation and delivery mechanisms;
- Monitoring Outputs (construction) and Outcomes (use) at the Gram Panchayat and household levels leading to Swachh Bharat.
Funding for these new initiatives will be through the following:
- Budgetary allocations
- Contributions to the Swachh Bharat Kosh
- Through commitments under Corporate Social responsibility (CSR)
- Funding assistance from multilateral sources
The Action plan is centered around the following:
- STRENGTHENING DELIVERY MECHANISM
While the mass media can create awareness and bring changes in attitude, what is significant is the creation of necessary infra structure for construction of toilets in the villages and laying of pipe lines for supply of water in a time bound manner , this involves the provision of material and adequate funding . The Action plan proposes the use of Revolving Funds in construction linked-instalments to provide advance to poor households who cannot afford initial construction cost or to Gram Panchayats in construction linked instalments to be finally recouped against incentives released on completion of the toilets.
- NATIONAL REACHOUT CAMPAIGN
To bring in behavioral change is the biggest challenge before the government. A National Reachout Campaign has been unleashed towards this end.
The measures include:
i) A continuous door to door contact with every rural household in the country on the lines of the Pulse Polio campaign so that the people can be made aware of the importance of using a toilet and the consequences of not doing so.
ii) Launching of a National and State Level Media campaign making use of audio visual, mobile telephony and local outreach programmes to communicate the message.
iii) Involvement of Social, Local, Sports or Movie Icons in Sanitation messaging. Already cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar and many movie stars have joined the campaign.
iv) Community Mobilization is an important step to turn the campaign into a mass movement. It is not just the involvement of ASHA workers, Self Help Groups and other NGOS which is already being done but also using School children as a medium to influence families.
v) Involving school children as messengers of Change on ‘WASH’ – Water, Sanitation and Hygiene and including inputs in the school curriculum till Class X.
vi) Getting Doctors, teachers, local political and religious leaders involved in the Sanitation Communication, is also part of this Mission approach.