|Clean, serene country side|
More than six decades have passed after India gained independence. We have sent a satellite to Mars, is home to some of the most brilliant brains in the whole world and the richest in our country occupy the top rung among billionaires of the world.
Still nearly 130 million households lack proper sanitation facilities and people are forced to defecate in the open. The unhygienic conditions that prevail in the public toilets that are present in many areas also drive people to seek a spot of clean ground out in the open to answer nature’s call.
While driving to my native place, we have to pass through many rural areas and kids defecating in the open, beside the roads and railway lines are a common sight.
We go on travels by road and the worst problem that a female travelling by road in India face is the absence of clean toilets. Most of the public toilets are in dilapidated condition and are terrible stinking hellholes. I have had to use public toilets while on long travels and they have given me nightmares for days together. On many occasions, we search out the good hotels or restaurants in the area just to answer the calls of nature. Even pay and use toilets do not cater to my sensibilities.
In India, the general theory is to treat the toilet as a dump area, which usually will be the worst place in the whole house. The interior of many houses may speak of splendor and cleanliness, but if you enter their toilet, you might want to run with your nose pinched closed tightly.
I personally spend time to clean the bathroom and toilet in my house until it shines. I believe that the health of the inhabitants of the house depends on the cleanliness practiced in the house. Inside a toilet, we cleanse our system and our bodies by taking bath. Hence we should clean our toilets with proper care if we want to maintain a healthy environment in our home. The toilet should be the cleanest area in any home. Otherwise, there is a chance of inviting infectious diseases.
Another problem that women face is the lack of clean separate toilets for women in workplaces. I have come across many women who work in shops as sales girls drinking very less water to avoid using a toilet. Many use the same sanitary napkin for more than 10 hours because of inadequate facilities. Very soon, they damage their health and lose the ability to earn a living. They instead become burdens to their own family.
School going children too face similar problems. Even schools, which demand huge donations at the time of admission, fail to provide the basic hygienic facilities to the kids who spent a majority of their waking hours at school. I still remember the stinking toilets that we avoided entering while in school and college. The situation has not changed even a bit.
The presence of malls, which maintain clean toilets, the restaurants that employ staff 24/7 to maintain hygienic environment need to be applauded. I have seen foreigners heading to malls just to relieve themselves after their visits to local attractions. The toilets available in tourist places are yet another stain to our country. Do I have to mention about the toilets in our trains, bus stations and railway stations?
It is a welcome relief that our present Prime Minister has proclaimed that building toilets should be given more priority than building temples. What I want to see is that plans are put I place to see to their maintenance. If they are not maintained properly, they would just become the hub of contagious diseases that people will dread to enter.
Many kids in rural areas fall prey to water borne diseases like diarrhoea and suffer due to the unhygienic conditions that prevail in their villages.
Domex has come up with a solution to this. Domex, HUL’s flagship sanitation brand, currently runs the Domex Toilet Academy (DTA) programme. They build toilets in villages facing the problem of open defecation.
For more details, do log on to http://www.domex.in/.
You can bring about the change in the lives of millions of kids, thereby showing your support for the Domex Initiative. All you need to do is “click” on the “Contribute Tab” on www.domex.in and Domex will contribute Rs.5 on your behalf to eradicate open defecation, thereby helping kids like Babli live a dignified life.