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India beats Pakistan...in ignominy
India has a dubious distinction of possessing the highest open defecation waste in the world – more than 50% of open defecation in the world takes place in India. According to Planning Commission, 4-5 lakhs of children below the age of five die every year because of water borne diseases. Poor sewage and lack of proper sanitation infrastructure results in 80% of the diseases in India. It is equally pathetic that only 40% Indians have access to toilets resulting in open defecation. If that was bad, industrial waste, which creates severe ground water pollution, is worse!
In this respect, a mention must be made of the magnanimous efforts of Dr. Bindeshwar Pathak for installing 6,50,000 toilets and 62 excreta based biogas plants under the Sulabh Sanitation Movement. The effort started from his home state where scavenging human waste is not uncommon. If controlling inflation is an important issue for the government, one wonders why so isn’t the objective of providing a dignified human existence for every Indian citizen? Politicians can rejoice – India, in the Human Sanitation Index, is now only above Afghanistan and Pakistan from the bottom!
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