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Chhattisgarh beautifies Open Defecation spots, promotes pit manure

20 Nov 2019

Chhattisgarh which was declared open defecation free (ODF) in October 2017 has adopted a comprehensive plan, tailored to the needs of the local communities to sustain its ODF status. Among its activities are beautification of former open defecation spots with planting of Tulsi and Peepal saplings which are considered holy; and promoting the use of rich manure from pits that are emptied.

The move is in anticipation of the single and twin pits that will be ready for emptying in due course. The state which is made up of 27 districts, 10971 Gram Panchayats, 19567 villages and 44,29,138 rural households is preparing people for this exercise, encouraging them to use the manure for their kitchen gardens.

Evaluation studies: With support of UNICEF and WaterAid, the State intends to conduct evaluation studies to assess the success of the Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin programmes. Along with this, on a regular basis, success stories will be gathered and disseminated while good practices will be documented.

IEC for ODF sustainability: Given that IEC plays a very critical role in bringing awareness on various aspects, the state has planned a number of activities: These include –

• sign/boards welcoming people to ODF villages at the entrance
• models of twin pit toilet, vermin compost pit, NADEP method of composting in every village
• wall paintings on ODF sustainability
• 5 slogans per village to encourage safe sanitation practices
• case study workshops each month in every block
• radio talks where PRI members share experiences on sustainability
• sanitation related activities every month as reflected on the events calendar
• sanitation, sustainability monitoring and reporting to be part of agenda at Gram Sabhas
• secret ballot for identification of those continuing to defecate outdoors
• use and promotion of mobile bio-toilets during community functions
• Swachhata Utsav to celebrate ODF anniversaries
• special cleanliness drives for upgrading sanitation status of villages
• open defecation audit to ascertain continued usage of toilets
• awareness on child excreta management through anganwadi workers
• exposure visits for cross learning experience
• community Shramdan to maintain public places and keep GP surroundings clean
• community oath ceremony at places of worship

Capacity Building: Trainings planned for the year include – technology options for rural sanitation both at household and community levels; SLWM, ODF sustainability activities, mobile based monitoring system; maintenance of SBM assets; preparation of cleaning materials for SHGs; and modification in the technology to cater to the physically challenged and transgenders.

Strengthening of CBOs & Community: Focus will be given to – activation of Nigrani Samitis to monitor sustainability; Village Water and Sanitation Committee (VWSC) to monitor and reinforce ODF status of their villages; block/district level officials for strengthening community based organizations such as Nigrani Samitis, Nau ratn and village level institutions such as Schools, Anganwadis, primary PHCs; PRI to maintain sanitation; and presenting awards/recognitions to village level functionaries/institutions.

Verification of ODF status: In order to track and monitor regular use of toilets as well as their operation and maintenance, the state will carry out ODF verification using the mWater surveyor App. It will also develop area and issue specific IEC materials based on the results of regular surveys.

Plan of action for SLWM: As many as 2703 GPs have been selected for setting up of SLWM projects and a sum of Rs. 476.43 crore has been allocated for the purpose. These schemes will be implemented in convergence with MGNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act), NRLM (National Rural Livelihoods Mission) and MNRE (Ministry of New and Renewable Energy). The state has also developed a decentralized waste management policy that promotes management of bio-degradable waste at household level; leaving just non-biodegradable waste to be collected once a week. Paid Swachhagrahis have been assigned to collect, segregate, dispose, reuse and resell the latter.

In addition, 1171 GPs are to have cattle shelters where the state plans to set up biogas projects under the Gobardhan scheme and free biogas connections will be given to families residing near the plants. Also forward linkages will be established for revenue generation through biodegradable waste and by-products that are generated such as bio slurry, cow urine, bio-waste, etc, to make it a self-sustainable model. SHGs will be engaged for O&M of biogas plants.

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