Uttar Pradesh is now gearing up to achieve the ODF++ category for its villages by 2025, in the second phase of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Rural), said a state government spokesperson.
An area could be declared ODF+, if at any point of the day, not a single person is found defecating and/or urinating in the open, and all community and public toilets are functional and well-maintained.
While the ODF++ protocol adds the condition that faecal sludge/septage and sewage is safely managed and treated, with no discharging and/or dumping of untreated faecal sludge/septage and sewage in drains, water bodies or open areas.
The Yogi Adityanath government is making every effort to transform the countryside in terms of cleanliness and clean environment by building personal and community toilets; having a system in place for their regular maintenance; providing sound sludge management and sewage network; ensuring safe disposal of faecal, solid and liquid waste; as well as maintaining regular water supply in the next four years, said the spokesperson.
As the mission is big, the government also seeks community participation in it, said the spokesperson.
The objective is to relegate the age-old practice of open defecation to history and script a new chapter in the evolution of villages.
The Central government has approved a budget of Rs 2,548 crore for Uttar Pradesh for the implementation of Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) phase 2 in financial year 2022-2023, said the spokesperson.
So far, the state government has built 58,059 community toilets, mainly for SC/ST communities as well as migrant workers in phase 2 of the mission, which started in 2020, apart from the 2.18 crore toilets built in the first phase.
All the toilets are being maintained by female members of SHGs that receive a monthly grant of Rs 9,000 from the government for the maintenance of toilets per panchayat.
In the past five and a half years, Uttar Pradesh has built the highest number of toilets and is also working tirelessly to have a sustainable system for their maintenance.