A man in a costume -- a turban, yellow t-shirt, and aqua blue jodhpuri-style pants -- will blow the whistle on the practice of open defecation or urination on the streets in New Delhi area.
The New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) has deputed ‘Swachh Sewaks’, cleanliness mascots, to stop open defecation.
As per Delhi government’s statistics, over five lakh people in Delhi defecate in the open. Government’s slum development agency, Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB), which has been assigned the task of making the city open defecation free, found that there are 259 open defecation spots in Delhi. It says that there is a need for 24,036 toilet seats across 70 assembly constituencies in the city.
The mascot, an NDMC employee in the costume, will blow the whistle and the offender will be caught on the spot. “We don’t want to fine them immediately. So we will just shame them,” said an official.
The NDMC has deputed the in all the 14 sanitation circles. The decision to deploy mascots has been taken in view of the Union urban development ministry’s Swachta Sarvekshan 2017. This year the NDMC area ranked four on the list of cleanest cities in the country, behind Mysuru, Chandigarh and Tiruchirapalli.
Special attention is being given to the slums and areas located along the railway tracks. As many as 28 people, two in each sanitation circle, have been deployed for the purpose and they will watch and guard the area allotted to them in two shifts.
“In case any person is found defecating or urinating in the open, the whistle will be blown by the mascot and the person will be caught on the spot. Appropriate action will be taken against him,” the official said.