The Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) was launched to Increase the emphasis on hygiene and achieve universal sanitation throughout the country. The mission's first phase was implemented as a nationwide campaign from 2014 to 2019, with the goal of eliminating open defecation in rural areas through mass-scale behaviour change, the construction of household-owned and community-owned toilets, and the implementation of techniques for monitoring toilet construction and usage.
It is divided into two sub-missions:
Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) for rural areas administered by the Ministry of Jalshakti
Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) for urban areas administered by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs. Given SBM's cross-cutting impact, the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation serves as the nodal ministry for SBM, with several other ministries actively involved in achieving its objectives.
SBM has the potential to address a broad range of issues. Water and sanitation-related diseases, for example, continue to be among the leading causes of death among children under the age of five. Inadequate sanitation facilities result in groundwater contamination, which results in diarrhoeal diseases that cause malnutrition, stunting, and death. The majority of women who do not have access to toilets prefer to relieve themselves in the dark, either before or after the sun sets. Such practises are not only harmful to their physical well-being but also become the cause of various fatal diseases.
The gravity of the problem that called for such Comprehensive Policy
India is confronted with two major challenges: waste generation and management, as well as a lack of access to basic sanitation facilities such as toilets.
According to Tata Strategic estimates, India generates 54 million tonnes of solid waste per year, and according to UNICEF India, approximately 564 million people defecate in the open. According to a World Bank study, the country lost 6.4 percent of its GDP in 2006 due to a lack of toilets and conventional sanitation.
About the Mission
Swachh Bharat Mission (Rural)
The Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan became a part of the Swachh Bharat Mission. Under the mission, a National Scheme Sanctioning Committee (NSSC) is formed for specific periods to approve or revise the action plans. At the national, state, district, block, and village levels, a five-tier implementation mechanism was established.
Phase I: The following were the objectives of the Swachh Bharat Mission during this phase:
Enhance the general quality of life in rural areas by promoting cleanliness and hygiene and prohibiting open defecation.
Accelerate rural sanitation coverage in order to complete full implementation by October 2, 2019.
Encourage communities and Panchayati Raj institutions to use sustainable sanitation practises and facilities by raising awareness and providing health education.
Encourage the use of cost-effective and appropriate technologies for environmentally safe and sustainable sanitation.
Create community-managed sanitation systems (where necessary), with a focus on scientific Solid & Liquid Waste Management systems for overall cleanliness in rural areas.
Improve sanitation, particularly in marginalised communities, to have a significant positive impact on gender and to promote social inclusion.
Phase II- Following the successful completion of the first phase, the central government re-launched its efforts to improve rural sanitation and hygiene with the approval of Phase II of the programme.
The mission will be carried out from 2020-21 to 2024-25, with a total estimated outlay of Rs. 140,881 crore, with a focus on the long-term abolition of open defecation and solid and liquid waste management (SLWM).
The following are the objectives of the second phase of the Swachh Bharat Mission:
Open Defecation-free - It consists of toilet-equipped households in villages, primary schools, panchayat ghars, and Anganwadi centres. It also includes at least five information, education, and communication (IEC) messages on specific topics that will be displayed in the villages.
A community sanitary complex should be built if a village has more than 100 households.
Solid Waste Management entails the effective management of solid wastes by at least 80% of households and public places, as well as the management of biodegradable wastes from cattle and agricultural activities through individual and community compost pits, as well as an adequate segregation and community system of plastic waste.
Liquid Waste Management entails the effective management of liquid waste by at least 80% of households and public places, as well as the management of greywater generated by kitchen use and bathing, storm water from individual and community soak pits, and black water due to septic tank overflow.
A village is considered visually clean if 80 percent of its households and all public places have minimal litter and stagnant water, with no dumping or accumulation of plastic waste.
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Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban)
The Swachh Bharat Mission Urban Areas, which was launched in October 2014, includes the elimination of open defecation, eradication of manual scavenging, municipal solid waste management, conversion of unsanitary toilets to pour flush toilets, and behavioural change in people (towards adopting healthy sanitation practices). Community toilets are built as part of the programme in residential areas where individual household toilets are difficult to build. Public toilets are located in key locations such as tourist attractions, markets, bus and train stations.
ULBs should be pushed to charge adequate user fees for waste collection and disposal, as well as toilet maintenance. The user charges for these activities are as important as user charges for electricity and water.
Projects for solid and liquid waste management should be included in priority sector lending.
To maintain the ODF status of villages and cities, the government should continue to monitor and undertake corrective measures for areas that might be slipping back from ODF status.
Follow up assessment of toilets constructed under the abhiyyan is imperative to ensure people don't slide back.
When the country started the campaign in 2014, less than 20% of the waste generated every day in the country was processed. Today around 70% of daily waste is being processed which is quite impressive.
The behavioural change that it has brought about is tremendous. The population today has internalised sanitary habit which will bring manifold positive changes in future as well.