To tackle open defecation, South MCD to install 100 mobile toilets
Densely populated areas, especially those close to railway lines, have no space for construction of community toilets. Some slum clusters does not even have sewer lines. Hence mobile toilets.delhi Updated: Jul 18, 2017 11:00 IST
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) is planning to install 100 mobile toilet vans at jhuggis/ slum clusters falling under its jurisdiction, inorder to achieve 100% open defecation-free (ODF) tag.
The civic agency has invited tenders for installing the toilet vans at earmarked sites across 104 wards on Friday. An amount of Rs 12 crore has been allocated for the project.
According to officials, the project aims to supplement the efforts of Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) and Railways —the agencies responsible for providing infrastructure facilities in slums.
“Densely populated areas, especially those located close to railway lines, have no space for constructing community toilets. That’s why we have decided to place mobile toilet vans here. These includes slum clusters in Okhla, Nizamuddin and Tuglakabad,” said a senior official from department of environment management services, SDMC.
“During the survey, we also found that colonies like Sangam Vihar have no sewer lines. Since the work doesn’t belong to us, we have decided to place mobile vans to stop people from defecating in the open,” the official said.
According to parameters of the Swachh Bharat Mission, any urban local body can declare its wards ODF only if it is successful in providing public conveniences at 75% of its areas. Also, there should be provision for toilets within 500 metres of slum settlements.
Assuming that these norms would be fulfilled over the period of time, the South Corporation, in May, made its preliminary resolution public and declared 92 of 104 wards open defecation-free. The agency had invited feedback and objections from residents, but failed to get any response.
However, later on, during the meetings with officials of various agencies (whose land fall under the SDMC’s jurisdiction) it was found that people living in slums (located near railway tracks) are still defecating in the open.
“This increased our worries as implementation of the project was not as simple as it looked. We had to request the DUSIB and Railways to speed up construction of toilets and if there is no land, they should approach other agencies,” said a senior official.
But since the implementation of this was taking time, the agency decided to place mobile toilets. “We want everything to be in place before the Gandhi Jayanti (October 2), when Swachh Bharat Abhiyan will also complete its three years,” said the official.
After SDMC’s final resolution, an independent team from the ministry of urban development will conduct survey of these areas before declaring them ODF.