Chandigarh:An effort under the Swachh Bharat Mission was initiated by the government to make the city clean and free from open defecation by constructing free toilets in the city and slum areas, but recently toilets in Indira Colony were found locked as caretakers claim that they have not been paid for the past three months. The contractor promised them salaries after the Swachh Survekshan team inspected the area and asked them to clean the toilets before their visit.
A similar situation was noticed at Kishangarh village. Ramesh, a caretaker of the public convenience at Indira Colony, said, “The contractor is making fool of us. Most of time the authorities avoid our calls or ask us to call later. With no choice left, I went to the police station to lodge a complaint against the authorities but a policeman told me that he will talk to the contractor and solve the matter as soon as possible.”
The authorities do not provide even basic things like hand-wash soap, toilet brush and chemicals for cleaning purpose. Till now the authorities have provided liquid cleaner only twice. Moreover, a water tanker comes once a day but the water is finished before sunset, making the people suffer while using the convenience. Due to lack of the needed things, caretakers fail to clean the toilets.
Rohtas, another caretaker, said, “The government should get tough with the private contractors so that negligence on their part could be checked. My family is fully dependent on me and with no choice left I am borrowing money at a high rate of interest. If the contractor does not pay us soon, we will approach the higher authorities.”
The situation is forcing people to defecate in the open which may result in the spread of various diseases like diarrhoea and other intestinal infections.
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