Telangana to commence ODF Plus activities

As a part of its ODF (open defecation free) Plus initiatives, the Government of Telangana has planned various activities for the year 2019-2020 to ensure access to water and sanitation for all people both in the rural and urban areas, in keeping with the Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin (SBM-G) guidelines issued by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation.

ODF plus parameters include regular availability and usage of toilets, management of solid and liquid waste, cleanliness of water resources, maintenance of public and household toilets and awareness on personal hygiene including MHM (menstrual hygiene management).

Here are some of the activities outlined in the State’s Annual Implementation Plan:

Mission Bhagiratha: Given that water is one of the essential components required to ensure ODF sustainability, under Mission Bhagiratha, piped water is being supplied to every household.  SBM-G will continue engagement of development partners for technical assistance, private partners (through CSR) for O&M, entrepreneurship for sanitation promotion and involvement of influential groups.

Sanitation Marketing:  The State intends to promote innovative social and sanitation marketing techniques.  SHGs would be encouraged to produce hand-washing liquids, soaps and napkins, etc., which will be supplied to local institutions.  In addition, Rural Sanitary Marts (RSM) will be established as a one-stop-shop for all items pertaining to sanitation and hygiene, meeting all sanitary needs of rural communities.

Annual Competitive incentive:  An annual competitive incentive programme will be launched to reward three cleanest Gram Panchayats in each district with Telangana Swachhata Awards.  On the other hand, districts will also honour GPs, institutions and agencies performing outstanding work in sanitation.

Swachha Gramdarshini Programme:  Every Friday, a team comprising of Special officer, MPDO/BDO, Tehsildar, Extension Officer (PR&RD) and all mandal level officials will visit the GPs as part of ‘Swachha Gramadarshini’ programme.  The programme which will be organized at all GPs would serve as a monitoring tool for ODF-S.

Toilets for floating population:  To cater to the floating population, the State SBM team is planning to build community sanitary complexes (CSCs) at weekly markets, destination points and pilgrim areas.  To supplement SBM-G funds allocated to CSCs, they would mobilize funds at district and GP levels, to build the required toilets. 

Convergence with all departments:  There will be convergence of all relevant Government departments, development partners, and other stake holders to ensure that SBM(G) sustainable indicators are embedded in their programming and reporting systems.

Special focus will be given to sanitation interventions led by key departments of the state: Sanitation promotion through Anganwadis (Women and Child Welfare Department); introduction of sanitation subject in school curriculum (Education Department); and maintaining sanitation in hospitals and promoting hygiene practices in rural communities (Medical and Health Department).

Also, Government of Telangana has enacted a new Panchayat Raj Act 2018, wherein, the subject of sanitation is made mandatory while preparing Gram Panchayat development plan (Panchayat Raj and Rural Development).

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