Tuesday, September 18, 2012

India to become open-defecation free in 10 years- Jairam
The Minister for Rural Development and Drinking Water and Sanitation Shri Jairam Ramesh said that there is need for de-bureaucratising the sanitation issue in the country and to make it truly a people’s movement. Speaking at a National Workshop for State and District Level Swachchhta Preraks here, he expressed the hope that India will become an open defecation free country in the next ten years. He said, Sikkim has already achieved the ODF ( Open Defecation Free) status and the States like Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Maharashtra are on way to achieve the sanitation goals in coming one to two years. He said, for the first time 600 Swachchhta Preraks have been appointed at the district level, who will be given job cards to spread the message of Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan. Shri Ramesh said, the services of about eight and a half lakh Accredited Social Health Activists, ASHA workers and 13 lakh Aganwadi sevikas will be taken for spreading the message of sanitation in rural areas and every ASHA volunteer will be given 75 rupees for construction of one household latrine. He said, 25 lakh women self help groups in the country will also be roped in to drive home the message of sanitation scheme. The Minister said, henceforth ODF will be the only indicator of Nirmal status of any gram panchayat. He said, while 28,000 Gram Panchyats have achieved the Nirmal status in the last ten years, this year alone the target is to make 29,500 gram panchayats open defecation free. He said, a forum of 30 NGOs in different states will be formed for evaluation of the work of Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan. 

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