(The Gist of Kurukshetra) SWACHH BHARAT MISSION (GRAMIN): TRANSLATING MISSION INTO
SWACHH BHARAT MISSION (GRAMIN): TRANSLATING MISSION INTO
- Swachh bharat mission was launched on October 2, 2014 on the occasion of
Gandhi Jayanti to achieve "Clean the India" by 2019. This mission was
premeditated to accomplish the mark 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma
Gandhi, the Father of Nation. Swachh Bharat Mission has got a Nation-wide
acceptance and has mobilized masses and public-private sector corporations
alike. The Swachh Bharat Mission-Gramin has become a peoples' movement,
through which our Prime Minister has evoked a sense of responsibility among
the people towards Clean India.
Unveiling of Swachh Bharat Mission is laudable not just for
sanitation development, but also for bringing about the behaviour and
mindset of change in millions of Indians. The mission is a community-led
movement focused on building toilets and educating people about the
importance of sanitation and cleanliness.
Mahatma Gandhi had rightly quoted, “Uncleanliness of the
mind is more dangerous than that of the body. The latter, however, is an
indication of the former” and this campaign aims at making every single
Indian aware of the importance of hygiene at physical and mental levels.
- The government proposes to spend 1.34 lakh crores to construct 11.11
crores toilets in the rural areas by October 2019. The funding for SBM-G is
provided by Central and State government and from Swachh Bharat Kosh while
some funding comes through multilateral agencies. The Swachh Bharat Kosh has
been established to collect and mobilise funds from non-governmental
agencies and corporate sectors.
Social and Economic Impact of SBM-G
- Swachh Bharat Mission-Gramin will improve the quality of life of people
of rural areas by promoting a clean and hygienic environment. A country can
progress only if the citizens of the nation are healthy and sanitation plays
a key role in it. Healthy citizens significantly contribute in the
socio-economic development of a nation.
- According to a study conducted in 2017 by UNICEF on the request of
Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, average households in ODF
villages, accrued of Rs. 50,000 per year there was a property increase of Rs.
- Summing up all of it, the total benefit bagged by households exceeded
the cost by 4.7 times. This survey was conducted on a sample of 18,376
respondents representing of 10,068 rural households, randomly selected from
550 Gram Panchayats across 12 states.
- It is hard to measure the intangible benefits of SBM-G campaign but the
impact on the dignity of both nation and individual is remarkable. The
quality of life and social status of rural citizens has been elevated.
- SBM-G is one of the largest behavioural change programme initiated by a
government in the world covering 18 per cent of the world population. It
strengthens the safety of women, girls and children and increases their
workforce participation because of better health and hygiene.
- Due to decline in open defecation, the overall health situation improved
resulting in great substantial reduction in the medical expenses and a drop
in mortality. Attainment of 100 per cent toilet coverage would prevent 3
lakh deaths due to various waterborne diseases (World Health Organisation).
- With a focused strategy involving various stakeholders in achieving the
mission, powered by strong political will and political leadership driven by
dedicated officials, the biggest achievement of the mission has become
'making sanitation everyone's business'.
Sustainable Concerns and Future Strategy
- The issues of sanitation need to be dealt through a sustainable process
i.e., without depletion over period of time and in order to ensure this
sustainability, we need to march an extra mile.
- Just building a toilet is not enough, it also needs to be maintained.
People will not prefer to use uncleaned and unhygienic toilets. Thus, proper
hygiene and use of toilets is to be done in a sustainable manner. There
should be water availability and proper knowledge about waste disposal in
order to maintain the toilets.
- During the past five years, almost all the 1 have achieved 100 per cent
sanitation; sanitation campaigns need to be organized in order to educate
the people the hygienic of toilet and economic use of water.
- The biggest challenge that lies ahead is not 100 per cent toilets for
individual households but the issue of hygiene in lieu of maintenance, water
supply and cleanliness. Also many people do not maintain the hygiene of
their toilets by properly flushing, cleaning toilets or using sanitary
cleaning material such as phenyl etc.
- People look forward for good quality latrine suiting to their
requirement and to set up for such needs, financial support from various
financial institutions are required. So, to promote defecation free
environment, government should make the provision for interest-free loan to
- It is a movement which demands behavioural change and persistent efforts
are needed to bring such a social change. Recognizing efforts through
appreciations and awards to various social workers, villages, Gram
Panchayats, blocks and districts could build commitment towards long-term
involvement towards promoting sanitation awareness.
- With taboos and beliefs operating, educating the public is another
crucial activity to be undertaken. For instance, many people with access to
toilet facilities at their houses still defecate in the open owing to
- Communicating for change in behavior of pubic is a key to education and
behavioural changes. Substantial initiatives including partnering with
various implementing agencies and voluntary organizations for better
sanitation drive should be given impetus, both philosophically and
- Above all, maintaining a momentum is a prime responsibility for
achieving a task as such. Therefore, emphasizing the role of rural youth and
social workers and motivating them is pivotal in continuing the urge for
rural sanitation awareness.
- A better and healthier tomorrow is not only the government's
responsibility but a collective duty to be equally shared between the
citizens and government. Government has been taking significant steps to
improvise the environment of the nation, however, even the citizens need to
buckle up their shoes and contribute in making the dream of "Clean India" a
success. Swachh Bharat would therefore make a significant impact on public
health and in safeguarding income of the poor, ultimately contributing to
the national economy.
- The outcome and achievement of sanitation initiatives should not be
assessed only in terms of number of toilets constructed but should ensure
that there is proper and regular use of it and thus, leading to cleanliness
and hygiene in the mind. The primary necessity is for strong behavioural
changes and strong motivation in making the mission not only a success but
also self-sustainable. The intent, endeavour and achievement of the
government on sanitation is truly a milestone.
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