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Swachh Bharat: Kerala best-performing, BJP-ruled states fail the clean test

Left-ruled Kerala is the best performer in building toilets for the households without those, but a closer look at numbers might tell a different story

Sai Manish  |  New Delhi 

File photo of a woman outside a public toilet
File photo of a woman outside a public toilet

The third anniversary of the Abhiyan (Clean India Mission), launched on a war footing by Prime Minister in 2014, might just come as an embarrassment for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-ruled states of the country. These states, two-thirds of all states in India, seem to be faring poorly in implementing the scheme meant to provide a toilet to every Indian household without one.



The worst performers are and Uttar Pradesh, where the came to power this year – in a coalition in and with an absolute majority in Uttar Pradesh. has constructed only one toilet for every 10 without toilets, while 83 per cent of without in Uttar Pradesh are yet to be provided those. Congress-ruled has shown some progress, albeit tepid – it has built for a quarter of without those.

 

The Left-ruled Kerala, it turns out, is the best-performing state. It has managed to construct in 82 per cent of the that earlier did have those. But a closer look at Kerala’s performance might tell a different story.


statistics show that more than 400,000 people in Kerala live in one-room hutments. This means these people do not have at their homes. But Kerala has identified only about 200,000 as being without So, its performance might appear twice as good as it actually is.

 
 
Under-identification of without also seems to have happened in West Bengal, ruled by Modi’s bitter political rival Almost 8.5 million in live in one room hutments. But only 6.5 million have been identified as having no access to

This is in stark contrast to BJP-ruled states where the number of without has been estimated to be far greater than those living in such single-room dwellings. While even those living in two-room dwellings might not have access to toilets, Kerala and seem to have faltered in including even those who never had a toilet in their homes.

 
 
One of the ways in which the Clean India Mission aims to provide in certain pockets of the country is by providing access to community shared by The BJP-ruled states fare poorly here as well. In states like Rajasthan, such under-privileged do not have access to even one toilet. This state, for instance, has 6.5 million without but has less than 25,000 community constructed across the state. In Congress-ruled Punjab, meanwhile, a quarter of such have access to community

 
 
BJP-ruled states also seem to be the hotbed of open defecation, despite the government’s multi-pronged strategy to stop people with from answering the call of nature under the open sky. Less than 10 per cent of villages in Jammu & and have been declared open-defecation-free. Bihar’s progress on this front has been worse than Only six per cent of the villages in have been declared free of
 

 

First Published: Mon, October 02 2017. 11:33 IST
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