Monday, November 17, 2014

Toilet for Babli

I am a travel enthusiast and fortunately my research profession encourages me for the same. Most of the times, I have to tour the remote villages in the hills for my research-sampling. Despite the breath-taking and picturesque landscape that the wilderness has to offer in the mountains, it is the interaction with the natives of the place that brings out the real picture of the place. During all these trips, the one problem that I have faced universally across all these villages is the lack of toilets. People have to move out of their houses towards a deserted area for defecation. Considering it is the mountains I am referring to, the colder months when there is snow all around makes this basic chore a hardship. These areas are the pit-stops for most of the mainstream tourism destinations. As a consequence, they only serve as traveller’ stops to attend nature’s call, without any major any major contribution to the uplift in infrastructure of basic facilities. This only adds to the waste load in the region and adds to the burden of disease-causing pathogens. Even the schools in these areas do not have toilets, which is a great hassle for the staff and students here. Unfortunately, this issue is not just restricted to the mountains, but sprawls across the country. Nearly six million people in India have no accessibility to toilet and defecate in the open. This sanitation problem has magnified into a major health issue wherein the sites of defecation- (fields and roadsides), serve as a medium for dispersing the pathogenic agents from the faecal matter to drinking water sources and crops. According to UNICEF reports chronic enteropathy and diarrhoea risk around 600,000 lives in India, while child malnourishment rates fail to plummet despite all efforts. An outbranch of this problem in the country is also public safety issue especially for women who have to step out of their houses even at wee hours to attend to nature’s call. The infamous Badaun case that saw vitriolic outrage against the teenager girls who had to step out of their house only due to lack of this basic facility.
The #Toilet for Babli initiative by Domex to build 24000 toilets till 2015 is a step towards solving these problems at the grassroot level. The least we could do as citizens of this nation is to rake in as much contribution for this noble cause. The website, ( gives us the sheer idea of the hassles little Babli has to face as she looks for a toilet. Just by clicking on the “Contribute tab” would add to a donation of Rs.5 on your behalf in not just helping these kids but also solving a major health problems of the country.

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