Print Edition - 2014-05-25 | Nation
open defecation free zone
- Bhojpur village to spend all budget in toilet construction
May 24, 2014-
Dalgaun VDC in the district had decided to distribute all its annual budget among villagers to construct toilets.
The decision was taken unanimously by the village council in order to declare the VDC an open defecation free zone. “We decided to spend all of the government aid to declare the area open defecation free zone at the earliest,” said VDC Secretary Lilanath Regmi, adding that of the total allocated budget of Rs 1.48 million, they had decided to spend Rs 1.3 million for the purpose. Even the local
political parties have expressed solidarity with the cause stating that the move will help keep corruption at bay and improve sanitation in the village.
The VDC had been allocating its budget on the construction of roads, in which corruption was rampant, in previous years. All nine wards of the VDC had already started initial work and readied construction materials like sand and gravel, said Surendra Bahadur Karki of Dalgaun-3. “There are 578 households
in the VDC and each of
them is constructing a toilet,” Karki said.
Meanwhile, Regmi said that upon dividing the amount, Rs 1.3 million, each household will receive around Rs 2,250 for the construction of toilets as opposed to the government policy of giving only Rs 1,200 to each household for the purpose. The VDC will also provide one toilet pan, 25 kilogram of cement and two corrugated metal sheets.
The VDC has also decided to spend the remaining amount, along with Rs 216,000 saved from last year’s budget, in preparing village and child profile. Similarly, Rs 400,000 received for the operation of the VDC will be spent on salary and bonus of civil servants and office stationery. The VDC has already signed a contract with Santosh suppliers via the tender process to bring in essential supplies. However, local Shankar Subedi complained that they were yet to receive the materials and that the delay could hamper the campaign.
Meanwhile, objecting to the VDC’s decision to provide the amount to each household regardless of whether it already had a toilet or not, Local Development Officer Prem Prasad Ghimire said civil servants getting their salaries and allowances from the state should construct toilets on their own. Astounded by the VDCs decision, Ghimire said a maximum
of Rs 700,000 had been allocated for the purpose in other VDCs. “However, as the VDC is an independent body, we cannot comment on its decisions,” he said.
Although the government has aimed at making the country open defecation free by 2017, the Bhojpur District Development Committee aims to achieve it by 2015. Of the total 63 VDCs, 14 have already been declared open defecation free areas. The DDC is aiming to make the remaining VDCs open defecation free areas within this year.
Published: 25-05-2014 09:29