Report of NSSO about sanitation in India
A large-scale survey conducted in 2012 by National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) says even after 65 years of independence only 32% of rural houses have their own toilets. It has also to be noted that it is in rural India where two-thirds of the country lives.
The report says about 550 million Indians – 70% of the people – living in villages defecate in the open. The next shocking reports are even 13% of urban households do so. In India, open defecation is found to be more common than in any other poorer countries like Bangladesh, Kenya, Malawi, Burundi, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo.
Poor sanitation leads to unhygienic environment and such condition in a densely populated country like ours has caused in an extremely high disease burden.
Poor sanitation and open defecation affects health, leading to high rates of malnutrition. The World Bank estimates that India’s sanitation deficit raise the disease burden in the country and leads to losses to roughly 6% of India’s gross domestic product (GDP). Mainly health of children is affected badly than adults. The extensive spread of diseases causes malnutrition in children thus stunting their growth.
Apart from children, women are also affected by the dangers of improper sanitation. Statistics say, only 22% of Indian girls manage to complete their class 10, others sacrifice their education because of lack of toilets.
Economic development badly affected
It is not only the health of the people of the country is affected, but also the development of the country is badly affected. As the reports given by the Indian Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, every year, on economic grounds, over 12 billion rupees is spent on poor sanitation and the illnesses caused due to it.
Massive campaign needed
India really “needs an immense campaign to change sanitation preferences”. A survey said that most of the open defecators said it was a “pleasure, comfort, or convenient” for them to defecate in the open. Some said it “gave them a chance to go for a morning walk, breathe in fresh air and have a look at their fields”. Others regarded the habit as “a part of a wholesome, healthy virtuous life”. So, massive campaigns are really needed to promote toilets by connecting sanitation behavior with health.
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