ODF zone limited to paper in Chitwan
Chitwan, November 18
Chitwan was declared an open defecation free zone on 23 September 2011. The declaration, however, has been limited to paper since the construction of public toilets has remained almost nil.
Market places such as Narayangadh, Bharatpur, Ratnanagar, Parsa, Bhandara, Sauraha, Gitanagar, Rampur, Chanauli, and Meghauli, among others, lack adequate public toilets.
The existing toilets are dilapidated due to lack of repair. Main bazaar areas, including Narayangadh, Malpotchowk, Bus Park Chowk and Hakim Chowk too are without adequate public toilets.
Public toilets are also a rare sight along the East-West highway, Narayangadh-Mugling and Prithivi Highway road sections. Commuters travelling along these highways are forced to defecate in the open for lack of public latrines.
When the then district Drinking Water, Sanitation and Cleanliness Committee had announced Chitwan as an open defecation free zone, it had also set the target of building 16,000 public toilets at many places to make the district a model one in terms of sanitation within three years.
District Coordination Committee Chitwan Coordinator Krishna Dallakoti said locals’ understanding that development was only blacktopping of the road and sewage had overshadowed other development works. “Local levels are apathetic towards construction of public toilets,” Dallakoti said.
Bharatpur Metropolitan City engineer Birat Ghimire admitted that the metropolis had failed to build enough public latrines.