Skip to main content

UN study: Households in "model" Gujarat less likely to prefer toilets than Bihar, Kerala, North-Eastern states

Counterview Desk
In what could be a major shocker for India’s top policy makers, a United Nations sponsored new study on households’ preparedness to have toilets has found that households in Gujarat, a “model” state for others to follow, are more unlikely to have a preference for toilets than Bihar, Kerala, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Uttaranchal and majority of North-Eastern states.
Carried out by the Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT), an open network of research and academic institutions and think-tanks in the Asia-Pacific region in Bangkok, in coordination with UN’s Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the study says that “households in the North-Eastern Indian States of Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura, Meghalaya etc. and the southern state of Kerala using a toilet facility are much higher than a household in Delhi (the reference state).”
“A household in Tripura is 761.5 times more likely to use a toilet than a household in Delhi”, the study says, adding, as for “Rajasthan, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu”, the probability of these states’ “households using a toilet in these states is lower than in Delhi.”
“This result may be the consequence of some inherent state culture, such as the North-East Indian states and Kerala having higher literacy rates, and hence better awareness about hygiene, or due to state-level differentials in sanitation infrastructure, namely availability of water and closed drainage systems”, the study, “Demand for household sanitation: The case of India” by Anurag Banerjee, Nilanjan Banik, and Ashvika Dalmia, says.
It adds, “In fact, in Kerala communities like the Nairs and Ezhavas, and in Meghalaya the Khasi, Jaintias, and the Garo tribes (comprising majority of the population) practice matriarchy, where women have power in activities relating to allocation, exchange, and production. This can also explain the prevalence of more toilet users in these states.”
The study points out, “The results indicate, households are more likely to use toilets if the educational level among women member is high, they are wealthy in terms of access to banks and own hectares of agricultural land, have a high standard of living, and if the family lives in urban areas. Households are less likely to use toilets if the household head is Hindu, belongs to the SC, ST or OBC caste, and if they reside in certain states such as Rajasthan, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, and Chhattisgarh.”
Carried out to find out why people across India prefer – or do not prefer – toilets against the backdrop of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Swacch Bharat campaign, begun in 2014, the uses demographic and health survey data to create a wealth index, and use it to rank household preference for toilets vis-à-vis 20 other different consumer durables – cot, watch, mattress, chair, bicycle, table, electric fan, television, pressure cooker, radio, motorcycle, water pump, mobile telephone, sewing machine, refrigerator, tractor, animal drawn cart, thresher, and computer.
“Our results suggest, among lists of household items that any individual want to have, toilets get a lower preference – ranked 12, out of 21”, the study says, regretting, “Television and motorcycle both ranks higher than toilets. It means these two items will be adopted at a lower level of wealth before a toilet.” Coming to the religion variables, the study says, it demonstrates that “a Muslim household using a toilet is 5.4 times higher than a Hindu household”, and even "a Christian household is 1.3 times more likely to adopt toilet in comparison to their Hindu counterparts.”
Suspecting that this could be due to caste system, the study says, under Hinduism “the customary circumvention of excreta is sustained by keeping defecation away from the house and entrusting the clean-up job to the so-called ‘untouchables’ or ‘lower’ castes.”
---
Click HERE to download study

Comments

Anurag Banerjee said…
I wish you would put the link our paper you quoted

Anurag Banerjee
Editor, Counterview said…
We have given the link. Thanks.

TRENDING

Green revolution "not sustainable", Bt cotton a failure in India: MS Swaminathan

Counterview Desk
In a recent paper in the journal “Current Science”, distinguished scientist PC Kesaven and his colleague MS Swaminathan, widely regarded as the father of the Green Revolution, have argued that Bt insecticidal cotton, widely regarded as the continuation of the Green Revolution, has been a failure in India and has not provided livelihood security for mainly resource-poor, small and marginal farmers.
Sharply taking on Green Revolution, the authors say, it has not been sustainable largely because of adverse environmental and social impacts, insisting on the need to move away from the simplistic output-yield paradigm that dominates much thinking. Seeking to address the concerns about local food security and sovereignty as well as on-farm and off-farm social and ecological issues associated with the Green Revolution, they argue in favour of what they call sustainable ‘Evergreen Revolution’, based on a ‘systems approach’ and ‘ecoagriculture’.
Pointing out that Evergreen Revol…

World Bank clarifies: Its 26th rank to India not for universal access to power but for ease of doing business

By Our Representative
In a major embarrassment to the Government of India, the World Bank has reportedly clarified that it has not ranked India 26th out of 130 countries for providing power to its population. The top international banker’s clarification comes following Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal’s claim that India has “improved to 26 position from 99” in access to electricity in just one year.

Some Hindu bodies in US defending BJP-RSS' divisive, violent activities: Agnivesh

Counterview Desk Last week, Washington DC saw speakers at a religious freedom roundtable, chaired by the US Ambassador for Religious Freedom, Sam Brownback, express concern over "eroding" space for religious freedom in India. Dr Mike Ghouse, executive director, of the Center for Pluralism in Washington DC, referring to the roundtable, said in an email alert that Indian-Americans have "a moral duty to prevent India from being labeled as a Country of Particular Concern by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF)".

Rejoinder: Inescapable to have Central Water Commission as strong technical body in India

By BN Navalawala*
This is with reference to Counterview Blog (December 5, 2018), "Modi govt 'shelves' water reforms report, shows 'no interest' in its recommendations", below mentioned are my comments/observations thereon:
A committee was constituted under the Chairmanship of Dr. Mihir Shah, Former Member, Planning Commission, for restructuring of Central Water Commission (CWC) and Central Ground Water Board (CGWB) for optimal development of water resources in the country in the backdrop of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM).

Murder of Tamil Nadu teenage Dalit girl: "Stoic silence" despite #MeToo movement

Counterview Desk
Brinelle D'souza, who is with the Centre for Health and Mental Health, School of Social Work, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, has prepared a strong statement to protest the brutal murder of 13-year-old Rajalakshmi. "Other than a few media reports, this gruesome killing has not caught national attention despite a very vibrant #MeToo campaign currently underway", regrets D'souza.

Preventing childhood deaths: India performs worse than Bangladesh, "equals" Pakistan

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released study, “The Pneumonia and Diarrhea Progress Report 2018”, prepared by the International Vaccine Access Centre (IVAC) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, has identified India among 15 other countries which are still far off the mark in achieving the targets of the Global Action Plan for the Prevention of Pneumonia and Diarrhea (GAPPD).

60 ex-civil servants seek release of CAG reports on Rafale, demonetisation before 2019 polls

Counterview Desk
As many as 60 retired civil servants have asked President Ram Nath Kovind to expedite the release of Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) reports on demonetisation and the Rafale deal. The letter, signed mainly by former Indian Administrative Service, Indian Foreign Service and Indian Police Service officers, regrets that the status of the audit is "unclear”. According to them, “An impression is gaining ground that CAG is deliberately delaying its audit reports on demonetisation and Rafale deal till after the May 2019 elections so as not to embarrass the present government”.

India's rewritten textbooks talk of demerits of democracy, praise Hitler, underrate Mughals

Counterview Desk
A detailed, 3,800-word review of the books rewritten under directions of the BJP rulers across India since Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in May 2014 has suggested that one of aims of the books is to instill a sense of doubt about India’s democratic polity among the country’s young minds. Reviewed in the prestigious US journal, “The New York Review of Books”, in its latest issue (December 6, 2018) by Alex Traub, the scrutiny insists, the effort has also been to paint Indian history from the angle of “Hindu triumphalism”, even as creating “Islamophobia”.

Govt of India "tarnishing" NGO reputation, dossier leaked selectively: Amnesty

Counterview Desk
Amnesty International India has said that a deliberate attempt is being made to tarnish its reputation by leaking a dossier, supposedly made by investigating agencies, to media without giving it access to any such information. The high profile NGO’s claim follows a Times Now report about proceedings launched by investigative agencies, including Enforcement Directorate (ED) against the rights body for “violations” of rules pertaining to overseas donations.

Four children die after poor UP Dalit, Muslim families forced to flee to forest area: PVCHR

Counterview Desk
Peoples’ Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR) has said that the forest department police’s crackdown, allegedly without any prior notice, on Dalit and Muslim households in Dakhin Tola, Churk Bazaar, Sonbhadra district, Uttar Pradesh, beating up “children and old people, women, and men in an inhuman way”, has led to “forced displacement, starvation and discrimination”. This has reportedly affected about 350 people.