Udaipur: Vedanta group company Hindustan Zinc under its Maryadaa(www.facebook.com/maryadaa) project completed construction of 10,000 toilets in Rajasthan in the district of Udaipur, Chittorgarh and Bhilwara. The company has signed MoU with the Rajasthan Government to construct 30,000 in total and make over 80 villages open defecation free. So far 7 villages in Zawar, Debari, Chittorgarh and Bhilwara have achieved the status of ‘open defecation free villages’. 3 villages located in Bansen and Maton in Rajasthan have been already selected for the Nirmal Gram Puraskar.
India is counted amongst the nations who are suffering from a large population involved in open defecation. According to the reports by UNICEF, only 48% of Indian rural population has good toilet and sanitation facilities. More than 50% of Indian population defecates in open. Only 21% of India’s rural population uses improved sanitation facilities out of 31% of national figures.
In countries like Bangladesh and Brazil, only 7% of their population defecates in open. In China only 4% of the population defecates in open.
In India, Rajasthan in particular is a State where about 60% population defecates in open. A report by World Health Organization also mentions that over half a billion (more than 50 crore) people in India still continue to defecate in gutters, behind bushes or in open water bodies, with no dignity or privacy.
Lack of awareness and infrastructure is a leading reason for people to defecate in open. No doubt the figures are quite high in rural India but even the large cities and metros are not behind.
To create awareness and construct toilets in rural Rajasthan, Hindustan Zinc launched its campaign “Maryadaa”. The campaign besides constructing toilets is also working towards educating rural people about the health issues, diseases that can occur due to open defecation. Campaign has also been launched to sensitize people towards contamination of water bodies and spread of water borne diseases like diarrhoea and cholera.
Hindustan Zinc, on the initiative by Rajasthan Government, Hindustan Zinc signed an MoU to construct 30,000 toilets which would have 2 Leach Pits below to facilitate disposal of waste. As per the project, one Leach Pit would be opened at a time which is estimated to be full in about 5 years. Once the first Leach Pit is full, the second Leach Pit would be opened. By the time the second Leach Pit is full, the waste in the first Leach Pit would have been converted into manure, to be used in better yield of crops. And once empty, it would be good to use for the waste.
These toilets would also minimise the risk of contamination of drinking water sources thus reducing the health related problems in rural India.
Lack of toilet facilities in rural house is a grave concern particularly for the rural females, and the problem becomes even worse during late hours or during pregnancy. Toilet in each house provides not just comfort but is also a matter of dignity – “Maryadaa” and brings sense of security and safety.