A sustained campaign by villagers over the last one year at Kandigaon village in Ganjam district has made the place open defecation free (ODF).
During this period, the number of latrines in the village has increased from 46 to 253 and a fine of Rs.10,000 collected from persons defecating in the open.
“There are latrines in all the 253 houses. The village in Kanheipur panchayat will be declared ‘Open Defecation Free’ officially by the administration soon,” said Executive Engineer, Rural Water Supply and Sanitation (RWSS), Berhampur, Bijay Kumar Patra.
A meeting was convened for the purpose on Friday, said a member of the village committee, which played a big role in Swachch Bharat Abhiyan.
On March 16, Unicef officials, including its South Asia Regional Director Karin Hilshof, India representative Louis-Gerges Arsenault and Odisha chief Yumi Bae visited the village and discussed about the ODF tag with the villagers.
At Friday’s meeting, MP (Aska) Ladu Kishore Swain appreciated youths of the village for the achievement. “Similar initiatives need to be adopted by youths of other villages to make Ganjam ODF,” he said. Similarly, MLA (Khallikote) Purna Chandra Swain said the goal of total sanitation under the Abhiyan would be achieved if villagers, particularly youths, come forward to take the lead role.- PTI