In the Budget 2020 itself, there was reaffirmation of Swachh Bharat Mission’s importance with efforts to secure the ground covered. While announcing ODF Plus initiatives, the annual allocation of ₹12,300 crore was given for the SBM. Recently, the Cabinet has approved the Phase II of Swachh Bharat, which tells us that the key words of Swachh Bharat are arguably continuation and consistency.
From the 38% sanitation coverage in 2014 to 100% coverage now, India has made a remarkable leap of progress. Over 10 crore household toilets were built within five years, and they are rightly called izzat ghar, since they brought not just hygiene but also dignity to the lives of poor, especially women.
With this context in place, it is interesting to observe the advancement of Swachh Bharat Mission into the second stage.
The Thread of Continuity
- The first phase of Swachh Bharat was about getting rid of those images of people defecating in the open. Now it is Open Defecation Plus, which makes people become further involved with solid and liquid waste management.
- The second phase of Swachh Bharat seems to go well with another mega cause this government is concentrating upon – water conservation. Swachh Bharat’s focus on Solid and Liquid Waste Management will contribute in keeping the water bodies clean. Within the first phase itself, UNICEF had noted significant reductions in illnesses and mortality. Greywater management and fecal sludge management is the prime component of ODF Plus initiative to build upon this success in a comprehensive manner.
- The second phase of Swachh Bharat has also aligned with another major resolve that India made – fighting against plastic pollution. Plastic waste management is first among the four outcome indicators in ODF Plus initiative.
Some of these efforts already in sight. Jagran reported that each village will be ensured with two community toilets now.
Innovative efforts in fighting plastic menace also be seen.
In Kamareddy district in #Telangana, you can now exchange 1 kg of #plasticwaste for three eggs. This is serving as an effective way to discourage the use of #singleuse #plastics. Read: https://t.co/MY3eVpMSkB pic.twitter.com/OPJ1mGJkTC
— Swachh Bharat (@swachhbharat) February 19, 2020
Swachh Bharat 2 – In Brief
SBM (G) Phase-II will be implemented from 2020-21 to 2024-25, with a total outlay of ₹1,40,881 crores. This will be a novel model of convergence between different verticals of financing. Of this, ₹52,497 crore will be allocated from the department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, and the remaining amount will be dovetailed from the funds being released under Fifteenth Finance Commission, MGNREGS and revenue generation models, particularly for solid and liquid waste management.
The Impact at Village Level
In the second phase of Swachh Bharat, financial assistance to the Gram Panchayats for construction of Community Managed Sanitary Complex at village level has been increased from ₹2 lakh to ₹3 lakh per CMSC.
An impetus to the rural economy is also expected through construction of household toilets and community toilets, as well as infrastructure for SLWM such as compost pits, soak pits, waste stabilisation ponds, material recovery facilities.
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