Ghaziabad: Brother starts construction of toilet as gift for widowed sister on ‘Rakshabandhan’ | noida | Hindustan Times
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Ghaziabad: Brother starts construction of toilet as gift for widowed sister on ‘Rakshabandhan’

Kamal Valmiki, who is from Dhanaura village, was inspired by the Swachh Bharat campaign and started the construction of the first toilet at his house for his sister.

noida Updated: Aug 08, 2017 10:10 IST
Peeyush Khandelwal
Kamal Valmiki has been taking care of his widowed sister.
Kamal Valmiki has been taking care of his widowed sister.

On the day of Rakshabandhan, a 30-year-old man gifted his widowed sister a toilet. The man works as a sweeper at a private hospital in Hapur but was concerned for his sister’s safety as she used to go to the fields for lack of a toilet at home.

Kamal Valmiki, who is from Dhanaura village, was inspired by the Swachh Bharat campaign and started the construction of the first toilet at his house for his sister.

The man hardly earns Rs 5,000 but has started the work, which is estimated to cost around Rs 20,000. Poonam, 35, is widowed and stays with her brother Kamal in Dhanaura village.

“My sister was married in Meerut but lost her husband six years ago. Her husband had died in an accident. Since her in-laws and her brother-in-law had also died soon after, she had no one to look after. I brought her to Hapur so that she can live with us. Her safety is of prime concern to me as she used to go to the fields. Nowadays, the scenario has changed and women often face harassment while going to the fields,” Kamal said

“My sister has two daughters, aged 13 and 11, and both are studying in a government school. So, I decided to gift her a toilet instead of giving her money or other gift as ‘shagun’ on Rakshabandhan. She is now assured that she and her daughters will not have to go to the fields now. Her in-laws’ house also had no toilet,” he said.

Kamal is married and has a daughter. Although the district administration provides funds of Rs 12,000 for construction of toilets, Kamal has not opted for this grant.

“We have asked him to put in whatever money he can. We will contribute the remaining amount. The toilet at Kamal’s house will be constructed from our contribution. We will set an example for others. This initiative will also be an eye opener for other villagers and we are hopeful that more men will come forward to construct toilets. Kamal has started the work and we expect that the construction of the toilet will completed within 10-12 days,” said Yogeshwar Tyagi, the village pradhan.

Dhanaura is located nearly 80km from the national capital and houses a population of nearly 3,000-3,500. Many houses still don’t have toilets.

“We have given a grant for the construction of 70 toilets in the village. However, Kamal has decided to construct the toilet out with his own money. The pradhan will be helping him out in his initiative. In case they seek our help, we will provide them funds,” said Renu Srivastava, district panchayati raj officer.

The officer said that they have so far got constructed nearly 21,000 toilets in the district, ensuring a sanitation coverage of 95%. The administration aims to esnure 100% coverage by the end of August.