Maharashtra aims to be ODF by March

Mumbai, Feb 6 (IANS) In a significant milestone, Maharashtra will be declared an Open Defecation Free (ODF) state by March, a top official said here on Monday.

Chief Secretary S. Kshatriya has conveyed to the Centre in a meeting held with Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation Secretary Parameshwaran Iyer here that the state is “on track to achieve this goal”.

He added that the state has a strong third party verification system for ODF declarations with three levels of confirmation.

Kshatriya said that besides ODF, the state was aiming to include hand washing, menstrual hygiene, community toilets, etc, as part of the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) implementation in the state.

For this, multiple cleanliness campaigns like Clean Offices, Clean Gram Panchayats, Clean Schools and others were also underway in the state, he pointed out.

Iyer, on his part, assured of the Centre’s full support in these initiatives to the Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis-led government in the state.

Under the Zilla Swachh Bharat Prerak initiative, a Prerak would be provided at district-levels to support the SBM activities by the ministry in association with the Tata Trusts, he said.

Making a detailed presentation to the top brass of all PSUs in the western region on the issue, Iyer urged them to contribute to the SBM at various levels, train workers and management trainees as sanitation champions and agents of change.

–IANS

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