MANGALURU: According to government records, only 519 toilets are left to be constructed in Dakshina Kannada district, but in reality, 10,000 toilets are pending.
The stark reality was revealed during the meeting of the District Water and Sanitation Committee here on Monday.
According to a source, 1,700 families in Belthangady taluk do not have toilets, 2,800 families in Sullia, 1,600 in Puttur, about 1,000 in Bantwal, and 200 in rural areas of the taluk don’t have toilets.
Though Dakshina Kannada was the first district in the state to win the Nirmal Gram Puraskar for achieving total sanitation in 2006, it is now grappling to reach the target. The scheme was launched nine years ago in the state.
In a meeting of Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan held on August 2, 2014, it was decided to construct 6,304 toilets.
According to government records, 124 toilets in Mangaluru taluk, 86 in Bantwal, 162 in Belthangady, 128 in Puttur and 19 toilets in Sullia needs to be constructed.
However, a source from a private survey agency said the officials conducted a survey in only a few villages in the district.
“There are many families in rural areas of Puttur, Belthangady and Sullia who still practice open defecation,” the source said.
Zilla Panchayat vice-president Sathish Kumpala said it is a pitiable situation that an award winning district has failed to complete the sanitation projects even after several years.
“The award was given for achieving complete sanitation, but the pending numbers are shocking. Therefore, the need of the hour is to complete the projects at the earliest,” he said.
ZP president Asha Thimmappa Gowda directed the officials to complete the construction of toilets in a month.
She said all schools should have enough water supply during the summer.
There are many schools that suffer from shortage of drinking water from January to March, Asha said.
Officials should take measures either by drilling borewells or making alternative arrangements within a week, she said.
A documentary by authorities of Shri Kshetra Dharmasthala Rural Development Project (SKDRDP) on implementation of solid waste management project in Chikkamagaluru was presented on the occasion.
Kumpala said the solid waste management project should be taken up in a few taluks within a month.
The project will be extended to all taluks in the future. There is no point in waiting for the availability of land, he said.
Zilla Panchyat Chief Executive Officer Tulasi Maddineni said the SKDRDP was selected for the solid waste management project as one member from each family is a member of the trust.