Against the backdrop of the ongoing Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin campaign that is active across the country, a toilet is now becoming a priority even for the most vulnerable. This is evident in the case of a couple in Pandera Village of Bari Sadri Block in Chittaurgarh of Rajasthan.
According to District Coordinator, Ashish Tripathi, both Kashiram Meena and his wife Pushpa Meena, from the same tribal community, had lost the use of one of their legs to polio. Though they own a quarter acre of land, 2 goats and one buffalo, making ends meet has always been an enormous struggle. Raising their five children under the circumstances has been tough – to say the least. Currently they live in an Indira Awaas house.
For 80 days in a year, Kashiram works as a NREGA labourer earning about Rs. 120 per day. Recently, he was gifted a tricycle by Narayan Seva Santhan (an NGO), which helps him move about. Also living with them are his younger brother who is mentally disturbed and an aging mother.
Despite their state of affairs, when the SBM (G) awareness-building exercises began in the village, the Meena family decided to build a toilet. They knew better than anyone how difficult it was to go out to defecate each day. With support from the District Resource Group and Block Development Officer, they received construction material and work is now underway. “We also helped design a facility that is disabled-friendly. It is slightly raised compared to the standard toilets,” said Tripathi.
Pandera village is home to 946 households of which 659 have toilets.
Source: District Coordinator, Ashish Tripathi, Mobile: 9414255441