Tarawata village in Madhya Pradesh's Guna district stands apart from other villages - it's spick and span. This has been made possible through the Total Sanitation// Campaign (TSC) launched by the administration almost six months back.
Slogans propagating sanitary habits and cleanliness adorn its walls. The alleys passing through the nearly 200 'pucca' (concrete) houses are bereft of any litter. There are no flying plastic bags, no unwanted paper, no cow dung scattered on the streets that look immaculately clean.
The populace, which consists of mainly Kushwah and Brahmin communities, depends mainly on agriculture for sustenance. And it's not just external cleanliness that the around 1,950 villagers have imbibed.
Only two houses in the village had toilets just six months back. Today, it boasts of having a 100 percent sanitation graph. 'Not a single house of the village is without a toilet,' says S.K. Mishra, nodal officer of TSC.
'Earlier, the nullahs (drains) would always be choked. But after the district administration's efforts and the implementation of the project, the village has undergone a 'sanitation surgery',' says Sarpanch Hanumant Singh Kushwah.
Initially, a lot of counseling had to be done to convince the villagers to discard the age-old tradition of taking a 'lota' (small utensil) and going out for defecation.
'Motivating them to change their mindset was an extremely arduous task. But gradually each one started aping the other. They understood the importance of having a personal and exclusive toilet,' says Mishra.
Even the children of this village have learnt the importance of personal hygiene. Talk to them about the subject and they start parroting lines straight out of the Class 5 environmental science book: 'We should wash our hands before eating. We should brush daily. We should bathe daily and wear clean clothes.'
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