Total sanitation programme which was so far been executed by the Rural Development Department is permissible under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).
“If construction of toilets has not been included in the labour budget for 2012-13, supplementary annual action plan and labour budget to include the proposed toilets to be constructed in the current financial year,” said a recent communique from the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD).
The Ministry has also issued revised guidelines to the State Government indicating the process to be followed while including sanitation projects under the MGNREGS labour budget.
The objective of including access to sanitation facilities under MGNREGS is to improve the quality of life of the rural people and strengthen the base of the rural livelihood. The other objective is to accelerate the sanitation coverage in rural areas as the total sanitation campaign has failed to achieve the desired results, the MoRD said.
The Panchayati Raj Department has directed all the district collectors and district rural development agencies to draw up supplementary annual action plan and labour budget in their respective districts for submission to the Centre.
Construction of latrines of individual households, schools and anganwadi centres will be taken up if they are not covered under the total sanitation campaign administered by the Rural Development Department.
While extending the benefit to individual households, the names of the beneficiaries should be duly approved by gram sabha. The list of beneficiaries should be approved by the respective gram panchayats.
Only job card holders will be employed for the unskilled works and the total amount to be utilised should not exceed ` 4,500 per individual household, the MoRD guidelines said adding, the construction of sanitation facilities are subject to social audit.
The 2011 census for sanitation and water said that about 37 million people in the State defecate in the open and 78 per cent of the households do not have toilets.
As per the Census, the total households in the State was 96,61,085 and 75,35,646 of them do not have toilets.
The scenario in rural areas is worse. At least 85.9 per cent households do not have any form of a latrine. In urban areas, the figure stands at 35.2 per cent.