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The Union Territory of Daman and Diu, in west India, consists of two separate areas divided by the Arabian Sea. The UT has completed the second open defecation free (ODF) verification of the two districts that comprise of 15 Gram Panchayats, 25 villages and 32,170 rural households.
Verification is a measure to verify ODF claims of villages. In this regard, the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation (MDWS) has framed guidelines for ODF verification and has provided a checklist for GPs/villages to be declared ODF.
The indicators for verification are as per the definition of ODF given by MDWS: “ODF is the termination of faecal-oral transmission, defined by a) no visible faeces found in the environment/village; and b) every household as well as public/community institutions using safe technology option for disposal of faeces.”
The process of ODF verification will start with a Gram Sabha resolution of self-declaration of achievement of ODF status. At least two verifications have been recommended – the first verification within 3 months of the declaration to verify the ODF status; and the second after around 6 months of first verification, either through own teams in which case there will be cross verification; or through a third party. The verifying teams will have to be appropriately trained to understand ODF definition, including safe disposal of excreta.
Second Verification: Daman and Diu carried out second verification of ODF in December 2018. All the Village Panchayat Secretaries, Junior Engineers and Swachhagrahis carried out the verification at every house. Thereafter a survey team was formed to monitor and carry out sustainability activities. To sustain behavior change and ensure that all people regularly use toilets, awareness sessions are being held, both by the community workers and government staff.
Solid waste management: The UT has proposed the development of an Integrated Solid Waste Management System for the district panchayat, Daman on Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer (DBFOT) basis through outsourcing at an indicative project cost of approximately Rs. 4.50 crore. This includes door to door collection of waste, transportation and processing of waste as per SWM Rules of 2016. Currently, generation of waste is pegged at 50 to 55 MT per day.
In the meantime, door to door garbage collection by all Gram Panchayats is done, and dustbins have been distributed to all people to promote segregation of dry and wet waste.
Other ODF sustainability activities: To drive home the importance of hygiene and sanitation among school students, regular sessions are held in schools. GP officials regularly monitor cleanliness in village public spaces and surroundings and ensure that people regularly use toilets and do not litter. While the cleanest GPs are felicitated for their performance, NSS students, village volunteers, Swachhagrahis and teachers are assigned to create awareness.
IEC/IPC activities: Hoardings, posters and banners bearing messages to create awareness about the vices of open defecation are displayed in all GPs of Daman and Diu. Audio visuals, rallies, swachhata raths, street plays, nukkad naataks, distribution of IEC material (caps, T-Shirts, leaflets), and campaigns such as Swachhata Hi Seva, World Toilet Day contest, Swachh Sundar Shauchalaya, Swachh Shakti and Swachh Survekshan Grameen have helped build momentum.
[ The Blog was first published on https://sbmgramin.wordpress.com/ ]