In response to a request from the Jaipur Municipal Corporation (JMC) the Centre for Advocacy and Research (CFAR) facilitated an inspection of IHHLs (Individual House Hold Latrines) in Jhalana Kunda, in Jaipur, by a team from the Quality Council of India; an autonomous body that has been set up by the Government of India, as an auxiliary unit of the Union Ministry of Urban Development (MoUB), to conduct the Swachhata Sarvekshan Survey.
The purpose of the Survey, which commenced on January 4, 2017, in 500 cities including Jaipur, is to rank cities on the basis of the work done by Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) on cleanliness, hygiene and other aspects of safe sanitation at the local level. JMC also requested CFAR to facilitate an interaction with members of the Women’s Forum in the settlement.
The visit to Jhalana Kunda, a temporary settlement, on January 28, 2017, began with the two member team comprising of Shrimati Yashodhara Vijayan, Deputy Secretary, Government of India and Shri Pankaj Tyagi, Representative, Quality Council of India, inspecting the IHHL in Shri Ram Chandra’s house. During the interaction with the family, Shri Ram Chandra’s daughter Kanchan, who is a member of the youth group, spoke of how the family used to “go to the jungle or nearby hill top to relieve themselves prior to the construction of the toilet”. When Shrimati Vijayan pointed out that the toilet space was “looking old”, Kanchan explained that in that space the family had previously constructed a temporary makeshift toilet with an exit pipe, which could be used as a bathroom during the night or if someone in the family was ill. And that in the same space the present toilet, using the Twin Pit technology, was built six months ago using the same structural base. She also showed the team the toilet and gave a detailed explanation on how the Twin Pit technology works.
The team then visited two other IHHLs in the settlement and asked Pramod Kumari, who had constructed a toilet six months ago, if she felt any different now that she has a toilet in her house. She told them that the benefits were many, the most important being that “we do not have to defecate in the open and can use the toilet during the day and at night.”
When asked if she had received “any support for making this toilet” Pramod Kumari said that they had “received Rs 4000 as of now but had no idea when the rest will come.”
Interaction with Women’s Forum
The interaction with the members of the Quality Council team covered a range of issues relating to sanitation and hygiene from IHHLs to garbage disposal and the importance of community participation in strengthening Swachh Bharat Mission.
Ms. Maya Verma, a member of the Women’s Forum told the team that, “there were 360 new IHHL constructions in the settlement and that some families have received the first installment while a few had also received the second installment.”
The discussion then turned to the disposal of garbage and how the community was dealing with it. Maya said that, all of them cleaned the space outside their homes “but in the absence of community dustbins we face the problem of dumping and getting the garbage removed regularly.’’ Manju then added that Women’s Forum Members have submitted an application to the concerned department on the lack of no dustbins in the settlement but “there is no response from the authorities.”
Shri Pankaj Tyagi, Representative, Quality Council of India, stepped in at this point and asked the Municipal Corporation officials, who were present, why dustbins were not installed in the settlement. The Sanitation Inspector, from Moti Dungri said that this was because “the settlement has narrow lanes and large garbage van cannot enter the lanes.”
This prompted Shri Tyagi to suggest that the residents should collectively designate an area in the settlement and persuade everybody to throw their garbage there. This garbage could be removed regularly and the settlement would remain clean.”
Poonam Kulshrestha, CFAR, also apprised the visiting team on the processes that were being followed to strengthen community participation in the Swachh Bharat Mission and the role of the community-based organization Daksh Samooh.
The interaction concluded with Shrimati Yashodhara Vijayan and Shri Pankaj Tyagi expressing their appreciation for the role that CBO and CFAR were playing in promoting sanitation and hygiene in communities and their approach and vision on community engagement.