TODAY -
TN Haokip urges Centre to construct sanitary toilets in hills
Source: Hueiyen News Service / Manipur Information Centre

New Delhi, October 29 2010: The Department of Drinking Water & Sanitation, Ministry of Rural Development, organized a National Conference of State Ministers in-Charge of Sanitation on accelerating Total Sanitation Campaign (TSC) in a mission mode on Thursday at Vigyan Bhawan here.

The main objective of the Conference was to provide a forum for the participation of the political leadership at State level and all stakeholders to develop a Strategic Plan of Action for up-scaling TSC in a mission mode and making India a Nirmal Bharat where the traditional habits of open defecation and contamination of the physical environment are completely eradicated and conditions are established such that the dignity and worth of each human being are preserved and quality of life is improved.

In his inaugural address, Union Minister of Rural Development Dr CP Joshi stressed upon the urgent need for concentrated attention to the sanitation sector since half of India 's population still defecate in the open.

He referred to Gandhiji's statement where he said that "sanitation is more important than independence" .

Manipur Public Health Engineering Minister TN Haokip informed the National Conference that the Total Sanitation Campaign started in Manipur since the beginning of the year 2001 .

In the urban areas of Imphal and 35 other towns, most houses had pucca toilets connected to septic tanks in their houses or in the vicinity of their houses.

The rural areas in the valley had toilets in the compound of every household but those were makeshift and consisted of open pit with a few carefully placed wooden planks to squat on.

A few sack cloths hung around the toilet pit for privacy.

The Minister proposed to construct sanitary toilets with covered pit which were not accessible to flies for purpose of prevention of diseases.

Referring to the sanitary situation in the hill areas of Manipur, the Minister stated that open pit was made accessible to scavengers like pigs and dogs so that they could feed on the human excreta.

It brought about the danger of another kind of disease- parasitic tapeworms whose life cycle was dependent on two hosts- human beings as the primary hosts and pigs and dogs as the secondary hosts.

The Minister drew the attention of the Rural Development Ministry to construct sanitary toilets with properly closed collection pits and to gear up mass awareness programmes towards the menace of tapeworms.

On the implementation of TSC programme in the harsh environment of Manipur both in terms of terrain and law and order, the Minister stated that it was difficult to inspect each and every toilet constructed.

He informed in the conference that Manipur government decided to hand over the implementation of the TSC to the District Rural Development Agency (DRDA)s as the chairman of the DRDA had good security cover and machineries.

Political leadership for the campaign could also be taken up by the Panchayati Raj Institutions and District Councils, he added.

On the consideration of National Sanitation Awards, T..NHaokip suggested that the award should be given to those qualified for the award only after a year observing that they remained neat and clean at least for a period of a year.


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