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Need trained people to manage public toilets in Pune, says mayor Mukta Tilak

Speaking at the inaugural function of the two-day Sanivation 2017, Pune mayor Mukta Tilak said that India needs trained people to manage public toilets.

pune Updated: Nov 19, 2017 15:15 IST
Prachi Bari
Prachi Bari
Hindustan Times, Pune
sanivation,mukta tilak,pune
Pune mayor Mukta Tilak inaugurating the Sanivation 2017 at Yashada, Baner, on Saturday. She urged the NGOs present at the conference to assess the number of toilets for women in the city and present the data to PMC.(Rahul Raut/HT PHOTO)

City mayor has cited poor management and lack of training of sanitation staff as the primary reasons for extremely unhygienic state of public toilets in India.

Speaking at the inaugural function of the two-day Sanivation 2017, a conference on the eve of World Toilet Day that falls on November 19 on Saturday, Pune mayor Mukta Tilak said that India needs trained people to manage public toilets.

She urged the NGOs present at the conference to assess the number of toilets for women in the city and present the data to Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC).

Sanivation 2017 is organised by Ecosan Services Foundation and Rotary International District 3131 at Yashwantrao Chavan Academy of Development Administration (Yashada), Baner, and supported by Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB), Pune Municipal Corporation, World Toilet Organisation and Sustainable Sanitation Alliance.

Nitin Karmalkar, vice-chancellor, Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU); Dr Uday Tekale, director, Swachh Maharashtra Mission; Yusuf Kabir, programme specialist, UNICEF; Rotarian Abhay Gadgil, district governor, Rotary International district 3131 and Dayanand Panse, director, Ecosan Services Foundation were present at the event.

“That we are speaking of commemorating World Toilet Day brings to the fore the gravity of the issue. Today, it is important that all villages are open defecation free (ODF) and we need to connect toilets and septic tanks to underground drainage system to ensure proper waste management,” she said.

The mayor informed the gathering that PMC plans to build 11 sewage treatment plants (STP) under the ₹1,000 crore project to develop underground drainage system and STPs.

Tilak urged residential societies in the city to participate in the best eco-friendly society competition launched on October 2.

Various panel discussions like need of integrated wastewater management, role of maintaining public sanitation, startups in sanitation sector and business plan session will be discussed during the two-day conference.

The Day

World Toilet Organisation was founded by Jack Sim on November 19, 2001, and its founding day was declared as World Toilet Day in 2013 by United Nations General Assembly. It is day to take action and raise awareness of the people around the world who do not have access to a clean and safe toilet and to draw attention on global sanitation crisis and serving the purpose of humanities most basic right of having toilets. The global theme for World Toilet Day 2017 is “Wasterwater”.

‘Pune uses double the water that is required’

Water experts at Sanivation 2017 discussed vital issues such as pricing of water, the allocation of water in terms of agriculture, industry and domestic use. Vijayanand Ranade, retired, state irrigation secretary, said, “We require five million cubic metre for per lakh population and it has come to our notice that each city is using too much water. For example, Pune uses double the water that is required. As regulatory authority, we are asking PMC to limit the water demand and our target is reduce the unaccounted figure from 40% to 15%. PMC uses three billion cubic metre of domestic water in a year. To feed the city’s growing population, we will require more water but sadly only 54 per cent sewage water is treated, and the rest goes into the rivers.

The other issue put up for discussion was on water tariff as followed by other countries, making water a priceless commodity. Experts also discussed on the question of who does the water actually belong to.

Dr Suresh Kulkarni, secretary, Maharashtra Water Resource Authority; RV Saraf, chairman, Viraj Envirozing India Pvt Ltd; Dr Vishwanath S, director, Biome; Sayali Joshi, CEO, Shrishti Eco Research Institute and Prashant Mahagaokar, director, SMC Infrastructure Pvt Ltd were the other panellists.

First Published: Nov 19, 2017 15:12 IST