Swachh Bharat! 96-toilet target cut down to nine in Ludhiana
Swachh Bharat claims made by the municipal corporation (MC) seem to be fading away as the number of public toilets that were to be set up under the Smart City project got reduced to just nine from 96 in the past around three years. The authorities have also not been able to install portable toilets, which were planned before the Swachh Survekshan-2018.
Earlier in March, state finance minister Manpreet Badal, while presenting the budget, had even set a target of making all areas under municipal corporations free from open defecation by June 30.
The MC has been working to install public toilets for the past around three years but nothing concrete has been done on ground so far. The MC had earlier proposed different types of public/community toilets at 96 locations in the city, the number slowly came down to nine.
As per sources, there was a lack of coordination between different departments of MC, including bridges and roads department and operations and maintenance (O&M) cell, due to which the civic body was not able to come up with public toilets as involvement of such departments was must in the whole process.
The types of toilets included pre-fabricated modular, mobile toilets, masonry toilets and Delhi urban art commission (DUAC) toilets. However, now the MC is primarily working to install pre-fabricated modular toilets at nine spots only.
Before the Swachh Survekshan-2018, which was held in Ludhiana last month, the MC had also planned to install portable toilets at 40 different spots in the city, but failed to achieve its target.
Sources in the department said the documentation was completed by the MC to get good grades in the survey, but nothing concrete has been done till now.
MC commissioner Jaskiran Singh said his corporation was indeed working to install public toilets at different spots in the city. “We are considering other proposals too and planning to install mobile and portable toilets,” he added.