Our PM Mr Narendra Modi has started a campaign of “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan” and people are enthusiastically participating in it. But sanitation includes open defecation problem as well then why we are ignoring it. People don’t want to talk about it as they think this problem belongs to the lower society. They can make fun of these things without realizing the seriousness of the problem. Although our PM is taking this problem seriously and as a part of it Bollywood actress Vidya Balan has been made the brand ambassador of the rural development ministry to spread awareness and advocate practices about sanitation and cleanliness among the rural masses in the country.
These days advertisements are flashing on TV, in which Vidya Balan is spreading awareness about the harmful effects of open defecation.The reaction of people around astonished me, “Vidya ko koi aur kaam nahi hai kya jo ye sab karne lagi?”, “Kya hai ye TV on karo aur ye sab dekhne ko milta hai”. These reactions are the root of the problem.
India has the highest number of the people (597 million) defecating in open, a shame for the whole nation. As written in TOI “Nearly 1 billion people worldwide defecate in the open and 82% of them live in just 10 countries, says a report jointly prepared by the WHO and the Unicef.India’s number is more than double that of the rest of the nine nations put together (229 million).”
Open Defecation always reminds a dialogue from Movie Hum Tum, when Kiron Kher returns from Paris she says, “Hindustan ki baat alag hai, khushboo hi kuch aur is desh ki. Wo dekho kaise nikke nikke bache sadak ke kinare baithe kar potty kar rahe hai”, how this thing can become identification of our country. Now this is a real embarrassment.
Other than embrassement, it has harmful impacts on our health. It is the root cause of many disease like cholrea, typhoid, hepatitis, polio, diarrhoea, worm infestation, it reduced physical growth, impaired cognitive function and undernutrition. A children dies every 2.5 minutes because of these diseases. According to experts, “When people urinate or defecate in public places such as markets, church premises, stadiums, airport terminal buildings, bus stations, petrol stations, or street corners, they not only help poison the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat and our environment, they also contribute significantly to shortening human lifespan.”