TAMIL NADU

Musiri panchayat to construct `ecological sanitation toilets'

TIRUCHI, AUG. 1. The Musiri town panchayat (with wards 3, 5, 6 and 14) on the banks of the Cauvery has come forward to implement a pilot project involving ecological sanitation toilets and dry compost latrines in order to convert night soil into manure.

The project aims at tackling the problem of water scarcity and pollution of groundwater. Both individual and community toilets would be constructed.

The initiative was taken on a trial basis by `SCOPE,' a non-governmental organisation, which constructed 18 such toilets at Kaliyapalayam. Drawing the appreciation of international agencies, including the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund and WATER AID, the project would be implemented in the entire town panchayat.

The panchayat president, M. Vidhya, said many poor people of the town were not aware of the importance of personal hygiene.

At a workshop held here recently, panchayat councillors and NGOs evolved a plan to ensure that the programme was implemented quickly and solid waste was managed properly. The Collector, V. Pandian, called for a coordinated effort by NGOs and the local body to implement people-oriented programmes.

Lucas Dungle, Executive Director, Auro Annam, Pondicherry, said the presence of air pollutants in the night soil could be eliminated using micro-organisms. Anselm Rosario, Executive Director, Waste Wise, Bangalore, explained the steps to be followed in solid waste management.

M. Subburaman, Director, SCOPE, explained the functioning of the toilets to representatives through a group discussion.

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