Saturday, October 5, 2013

I Agree With Modi In This Aspect!

Make toilets before temples: Narendra Modi tells students in Delhi. (link)

He and other politicians should have thought about this long back and taken action, not just giving speeches.

When our current Rural development Minister said this sometime back, the BJP and everybody else abused him.(link)

He is a Minister now.  Is he taking any action about this now?

No, this is not a political post! This is a 'toilet post', you can say! I remember even our Tamilnadu CM talking about building toilets in every area in the city first and then expand it to other areas in Tamilnadu.   I see some toilets on the roadsides nowadays.  But they are not maintained properly, I could see.  And our people don't bother to look for a cover for urinating.  They are not ashamed and not bothered about cleanliness.  They prefer to just relieve themselves wherever they feel like doing it.

I had written about this in my post of our Srirangam temple visit.  I noticed toilets in many areas surrounding the temple.  But some men were urinating on the wall of the toilet, outside the toilet.  Maybe because the toilets were 'paid toilets'.  We had to pay 50p to 1Re. for using it! But I was told that they had free toilets too! But who bothers? Even youngsters don't bother to 'look' for toilets.  And Chennai's climate is hot, nearly throughout the year...still...  How come women control this 'problem'? When women can control, why can't men?

Recently, I went to the Ashtalakshmi temple in Besant Nagar, Chennai.  The entrance itself is stinking.  We went early in the morning.  A busload of people descended in front of us at the entrance.  It was an 'Amaavaasya' day (New moon day, which is very auspicious here).  They went straight to the beach in front of the temple.  I was told that they take head bath and then visit this temple.  They didn't use the toilets which was very very close to the temple first. And look at the toilets:

The Ashtalakshmi temple, Besant Nagar.
The 'New' toilet!
The 'old' toilet, but it is not demolished before building the new one! And this is standing very close to the temple!

The temple is facing this area...Besant Nagar beach! The whole area is stinking.

Now, being Navaraathri time, the area will be too crowded.   If people can't keep even the temple area clean, it means the mentality itself is crude.  Going inside and praying is not enough.  If we want god to give us good health, we have to take some action from our side too.

A couple of weeks back our area's Venlakanni church had their annual festival.  People came from far off.  Though they have some toilets, they are not enough.  People sleep on the beachside or on the roadsides and dirty even the side streets of this area.  

I had been to Shirdi Sai baba temple at Shirdi, a couple of years back.  The area near the main gate stank.  Then I saw many toilets near the gate.  The temple authorities can build toilets and keep some personnel to clean them.  But if people don't have the mentality to maintain it/use it properly, it is going to be like this always.   

Here, in Chennai, the Sathyam movie complex has got beautiful, clean toilets.  How? 3-4 women keep standing inside the toilet area and ask people (when they have got doubt!) if they flushed the toilets before coming out! Shame!

What can be done? Dictatorship only will work.  People who dirty these areas should be fined heavily.  And it  should be done strictly, like it is done in Singapore.  Building  toilets alone is not enough...people should be taught from the school stage, how to keep the toilets clean!

Hope Narendra Modi takes some action in this area, as promised!

What do you say?


P.S.: I did a post on this subject HERE.



KParthasarathi said...

You don't see people littering after they have lunch even in beaches let alone the roads that are spic and span.No one spits chewing gum or throws butts of cigarettes there.Civic sense is inbuilt and taught from young age.

This apart ,look at the slums and ramshackle huts for the poor at every nook and corner.Where can they relieve themselves.There should be sauchalayas like sulabh has in Delhi but should be free except for taking bath.Can they pay 1 rupee each time they visit?But keeping the toilets clean needs employees.Can we expect the governement to build toilets all over?Philantropists in each area should fund such endeavour.
It is a daunting problem defying easy solution.Instead of freebies,toilets for each slum is a better alternative.

KParthasarathi said...

I meant in US about civic sense

Sandhya said...

K.PARTHASARATHY: Yes, I too noticed that when we visited the US. Even a 2 year old child went to the dust bin and threw the chocolate wrapper into it and we were astonished watching it.

The govt. should build toilets for them and they have started doing them and my servant maid says that her neighbours never let their toilets keep clean. I think this type of cleanliness should be taught in school. They are not used to cleanliness! There is no other go.

They are so used to relieving themselves in public that even free toilets never attract them, I noticed in Srirangam.

I saw the Shulabh shouchaalay/toilets in the North which are maintained by Corporates and I hope that trend starts here too.

Hope the next govt. gives importance to this problem.

Thank you, Partha Sir!

SG said...

I have been advocating this cause for a long time. I have even suggested, like USA, all gas stations (petrol bunks) should have toilets (clean and open at all times) for the public.

Sandhya said...

SG: Some petrol bunks and highway toll booths have toilets nowadays. But most of them are dirty.

SG said...

The government should pass an order requiring ALL petrol bunks to keep clean toilets available (24/7) for both men and women.

Sandhya said...

SG: Let us dream for it to happen, SG! And people should co-operate!

Onkar said...

It is sad. If our pilgrimage centres stink, how will people get peace there.

Rama Ananth said...

In India we do have public toilets, especially in petrol bunks, some are clean and some are not. Even many of the hotels on the highways are quite bad when there is a heavy crowd. I don't know why they can't have a slightly bigger toilet, just a little more spacy where we can enter comfortably and get inside, and also why can't it be kept dry.
Using these toilets, are a real pain, it does not cost much to keep it clean and dry, but still, we can't stop the narrow mentality of people who design such toilets.
In places like Singapore, Thailand etc. it was so offending to be told many times by the tourist guides to keep the surroundings clean, to the Indian travellers, as if it is known world wide how iresponsible we are.
And during one of our tripe to these places we had an old South Indian man, who ate the biscuits from the packet and just threw the empty packet on the ground, although there were dustbins everywhere, my son picked it up and threw it in the trash bin.
It is sad, although we are all educated,our mindset has not changed.
I must say, I was shocked at some of the toilets in the US too, many Americans don't even bother to flush after they have used the toilet, this in spite of having no water problems. I think many people are there everywhere like this around the world, maybe not in so many numbers as in India.

Ankita said...

Nice post..I agree with Modi too...Some time back, Jairam Ramesh too, said the same thing and faced severe criticism..we need to think beyond religion ..only mature thinking will take India forward

Haddock said...

Agree with you. Our country needs more toilets than worshiping places.

Rahul Bhatia said...

The lesser one talks about hygeine the better as we will take a few generations to change with or without any one taking a lead in this regards , Sandhya:(

Jeevan said...

“people should be taught from the school stage, how to keep the toilets clean!” Catching at young could change a lot. Yes, I too noticed the toilets next to Ashtalakshmi temple while waiting in the car a year before when parents visit the temple. Its damn dirt and smelt bad. I guess the surroundings of temples aren’t such neat anywhere in India? Except very few

Sandhya said...

ONKAR: Yes, Onkar. Too much population also might be one of the reason.

RAMA ANANTH: Hahaha...I have noticed this too! Most of the toilets are tooo small and the buckets and mugs are horrible. Health faucets can be seen very rarely, though it is catching up slowly. But some drawing can be kept in the toilet to teach how to use it!

I noticed this habit of throwing wrappers around by our people in the US also. I ran and threw it in the bin and my husband was not very happy about picking up from the road!

Hmmm...When we visited the Laguna beach in the US, I was shocked to see an overflowing toilet there in a shopping complex just opposite to the beach. The next one also was very dirty. I had to come out running! And I didn't see any Indians there! Your point is right, Rama! But the percentage is less. Less population?!

ANKITA; Welcome to my space, Ankita!

Yes, Jairam Ramesh also mentioned about this earlier. I have quoted the link, 2nd one, in the beginning of this post.

Thank you!

RAHUL BHATIA: Yes, Rahulji!

Renu said...

I dont think that we need to do any comparison between toilet and temple..we need toilets and period.
Our govt has pots of money for scams and ministers, but they dont invest in civic amenities, we have large populati0on, why cant govt provide free toilets everywhere? or with minimum charges, or monthly passes for people living in that area. It will generate employment also.

BK Chowla, said...

Somehow,we dont sem to get our thinking right.
JaiRam Ramesh and Modi have reffered to this iisue in totally different context.But,politicians being what they are,are only twisting words.
Talking of tiolets..In Delhi,Passport offie opens at 10am and the q STARTS AT 8.30.
Can you believe,there isnt a toilet there any where closeby?

Sai Charan said...

Well written on a useful topic - proper sanitation and hygiene are important for healthy living.

Politicians make such statements to show they are willing to develop the quality of life but they should keep their word.

There is always good and bad in the society and it is hard to teach the right morals to people who don't want to follow any rules - so, teaching morals from elementary level would help. And I agree that Government should make strict rules and charge heavy fine for those who are making public places miserable.


sm said...

Modi said rightly its good he said that before him Congress Minister also said that
and as you said Lets hope Modi will do as said
Yes to Toilet First Toilet

Rasam said...

In US there are toilets within the temple premises.. and they are very clean and fragrant too.. But here, one faces severe criticism for building a toilet somewhere near the temple.. god help us.. as you have pointed out, its not just toilets, but the civic sense of the people. I have taught my kid and strictly adhere to not littering the place. Sometimes he would ask why he is not allowed when everyone else throws.. I say someone, some day might look at you and change.. and that itself will trigger a change.. he might not understand now.. but he will understand someday.. as Gandhi said "We need to be the change we wish to see in the world

Priya Anandakumar said...

wow Sandhya, this is my first time to ur space. Nice write up, our people need lot of awareness, self discipline. They r least bothered about cleanliness. More toilets is a must along with that self discipline is also a must. People should be fined for littering in the roads and put in jail.

Priya Anandakumar said...

wow Sandhya, this is my first time to ur space. Nice write up, our people need lot of awareness, self discipline. They r least bothered about cleanliness. More toilets is a must along with that self discipline is also a must. People should be fined for littering in the roads and put in jail.

Sandhya said...

RENU: Your idea is good, Renu. I have seen many toilets in the slaum areas. But they are not clean since people don't keep them clean, my servant maid says so. But they are not enough too. One toilet for 4 houses, it seems. And everybody uses every toilets, she said. So all are dirty!

Many many more are needed and the school should teach the children about hygiene, I feel. There is no other go for improvement.

BK CHOWLA: I am not able to believe that Delhi passport office hasn't got toilets. And this is our capital! This shows how bad our system is!

SAI CHARAN: Yes, teaching hygiene has to start from elementary level. The parents who live in slums are used to using open spaces as toilets. The children should be made to learn how to use toilets. They can add a lesson in their books too. The talks in this topic are more now. Hope for the best!

SM: Yes, sm!

RASAM: Happy to see you here, Rasam!

Toilets inside the temple might get flaks from public. But there is a reason for it! Public do not keep the toilets clean. They can keep a couple of cleaners to clean them often, but not every hour. The Shirdi Saibaba temple toilet is near the entrance and it stinks! I thought they would at least give importance to the temple, but no, they just ignore. I think many people don't know how to keep the place clean.

People should learn hygiene from their childhood. Or TV should be used for this purpose. Small clips can be added during the famous serials. Govt. should compel to transmit these clips.

PRIYA ANANDAKUMAR: Welcome to my space, Priya!

Strict fining might help!

Thank you!

Varunavi said...

Sandhya i noticed here people when they take their dogs and cat for morning walk they carry one plastic bag and gloves to take out the dog/cat shit in the bag and throw it in the dust bin.People here see the road as their own house...their houses are clean so the roads....

We people take the dogs and cat outside so that they don't dirty the house....

How much ever govt does it's the people who has to parthasarathi said the civic sense has to start from the young age....

In dubai they used to penalize with heavy fines if you are caught littering the place...Once varu dropped a small paper in our parking area which i picked it up immediately but husband was fined for 50 aed.

வை.கோபாலகிருஷ்ணன் said...

Very useful & Interesting Post. Thanks for sharing.



என் தொடரின் அடுத்தபகுதி [பகுதி-65] இன்று, இப்போது நான்கு சிறிய பகுதிகளாகப் பிரித்து வெளியிடப்பட்டுள்ளன.

இணைப்புகளும் தலைப்புகளும் :-
65/1/4 தர்மத்தின் பெயரே ஸ்ரீராமன்
65/2/4 அமுத மழையில் நனைந்த அதிர்ஷ்டசாலிப் பெண்மணிகள்.
65/3/4 அமுத மழையில் நனைந்த அதிர்ஷ்டசாலி ஆண்கள்.
65/4/4 கரும்புகளை ருசித்த எறும்புகள்

இதில், அடியேன் தொடர்ந்து எழுதிவரும் ஸ்ரீஸ்ரீஸ்ரீ மஹாபெரியவா பற்றிய ஆன்மிகத் தொடருக்கு, இதுவரை ஒரேயொரு முறையேனும் வருகை தந்து கருத்தளித்து உற்சாகப்படுத்தியுள்ள அனைத்துத் தோழர்கள் + தோழிகள் பெயர்களும் தனித்தனியே குறிப்பிட்டு நன்றி தெரிவிக்கப்பட்டுள்ளது.

மேலும் இது 2013ம் ஆண்டில் அடியேன் அளித்திடும் வெற்றிகரமான 100வது பதிவாகையால், சில சுவாரஸ்யமான செய்திகளும் சேர்க்கப்பட்டுள்ளன்.

இது தங்களின் தகவலுக்காக மட்டுமே.

நேர அவகாசம் இருப்பின், தாங்கள் அன்புடன் வருகை தந்து, ஒவ்வொரு பகுதிக்கும் தனித்தனியே கருத்தளித்தால் மிக்க மகிழ்ச்சி அடைவேன்.


R. Ramesh said...

absolutely agree with this post:) good one r u? best wishes always:)

Avada Kedavra said...

Agree with you. Most of the toilets are so dirty, especially in tourist places. They should really do something about it. I agree with SG.

P.N. Subramanian said...

As you said, building toilets may not suffice. It is not that our people can not keep the place clean. They do it when they are in Singapore. In fact there is no fear of law.

Ramakrishnan Ramanathan said...

It is not merely a question of building toilets. It is a question of mindset & attitude. Forget about the poor who you can say do not even have a roof over their heads let alone have a covered toilet. Let us talk about the middle class as well as the rich They too relieve themselves in the open even when they have access to toilets. It is a case of Chalta hai indifferent attitude. They couldn't care less. They will also throw wrappers & spit out from a speeding car. But when they go abroad they are the very epitome of decorum & discipline and follow the rule of the land.

Sandhya said...

VARUNAVI: Dictatorship is best for our country! Our people should be fined heavily like they do in Dubai!

VAI GOPALAKRISHNAN: Thank you, Gopu Sir!

Your posts are interesting, esp. Periyavaa's posts. Thank you!

R.RAMESH: Thank you, Ramesh!I am fine. I don't seem to read new posts in your blog! You always make us laugh, which I like to do often!

AVADA KEDAVARA: Last week's 'outlook' magazine also had this subject as cover story. Nothing happens.

P.N. SUBRAMANIAN: Fear is the key, here!

RAMAKRISHNAN RAMANATHAN: Recently I had been to Kulu-Manali. I didn't see anyone relieving themselves on roads (It was very cold when we went there) or drop plastic on the roads. In fact a medical store gave me medicines in a paper bag. The man said that they don't use plastic bags there. This is inside our country. They fine if they see people drop plastic on the roads, immediately, it seems! I felt very happy!

Indyeah said...

Is it any wonder that we and our country are referred to as 'dirty' by outsiders? We take pride in keeping our home clean but not our immediate surroundings. Take that even further and eventually you end up with a filthy country.The day we start taking pride in our country , in being Indians , in knowing that our home is bigger than the house we live in, that day things will change. We truly are the laaton ke bhoot baaton se nahin maante. the same Indian in a foreign country is a different creature altogether.

Sandhya said...

Indyeah: We ourselves announce to everybody that our country is dirty. If you see in Elliots beach road, here, in Chennai, people who get down out of car just pass urine on the snacks which are sold on the carts and throw the paper plates, cups on the also is not influencing our people. But when the same people, as you say, go abroad, are careful to pack the used plates in a bag and take home! We are never going to change! Just sit and complain about others.

Usha Basker said...

People should have basically personal hygiene and social awareness to realise this in India. . Now I can see some maintenance being carried out in The toilet in Adyar Anandha Bhavan in highway going to Chennai. I used to thank that ladies cleaning the toilet every time I go there. Previously it was not that clean. Even in our Sobha Apartment compound wall the problem of littering is there. Truck drivers park their vehicles(which itself is prohibited) and urinate on that compound wall which happens late night. Awareness cannot be taught, it should be within one. I felt very painful when I read abt ur post.

Usha Basker said...

People should have personal hygiene and social awareness to realise this. More than building no of toilets or maintaining them mindset of the people is most important. After long time now I find the Adyar Anandh bhavan toilet in Madras highways maintained well which was horrible previously. I used to appreciate and thank the ladies who helps in maintaining it so clean every time I visit. Let us pray God to bless us all with such social awareness

Usha Basker said...

People should have basically personal hygiene and social awareness to realise this in India. . Now I can see some maintenance being carried out in The toilet in Adyar Anandha Bhavan in highway going to Chennai. I used to thank that ladies cleaning the toilet every time I go there. Previously it was not that clean. Even in our Sobha Apartment compound wall the problem of littering is there. Truck drivers park their vehicles(which itself is prohibited) and urinate on that compound wall which happens late night. Awareness cannot be taught, it should be within one. I felt very painful when I read abt ur post.

Sandhya said...

USHA BASKER: We easily say that Govt. is not providing toilets...but when they provide, our people do not use it properly. Hesitate to pay even Rs.2 to the cleaner. When basic hygiene is not there, nobody can help.

Nowadays, we see toilets near toll booths on highways, some are clean and some are not. Many roadside hotels provide nearly clean toilets, we noticed it during our roadtrip last year and this year. Some hope.

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