Now people will be challaned for defecating in the open. The Municipal Corporation has deployed marshals to keep a watch on those going in for open defecation. A fine of Rs 500 will be imposed as challan. In order to get ODF (open defecation free) status for the city, 10 teams of five marshals have been constituted. Initially, the marshals, who are employees of the civic body, will tell people to use the toilets made by the civic body and not go out in the open. After that, the marshals will start challaning from this week itself.
“The marshals will identify people who are habitual. All those defecating in the open will be made aware and then the challaning will begin in few days,” said Municipal Commissioner Baldeo Purushartha. The civic body has expedited its work in this context since a team from the ministry will be visiting the city soon to decide whether Chandigarh deserves the ODF tag. The team will have certain parameters and they will check the city during the morning hours. The team will also check the availability of toilets and their use by people.
The marshals have been assigned colony and village areas. They will explain people the importance of cleanliness, health and hygiene under the Swachh Bharat Mission. Not only will people be told of the challans that will be issued but also the contamination that takes place from open defecation. The effects of open defecation like contaminating agricultural produce and spread of diseases like diarrhoea and cholera will also be discussed. After that, challaning will begin and the fine will have to be deposited with the MC’s MOH wing.
Mayor Arun Sood’s ward and Senior Deputy Mayor Davesh Moudgil’s ward have already been given the ODF status. A team of MC had checked the status of these wards and then declared them ODF. Self-declaration forms from the councillors, schoolchildren and self-help groups are also being got filled.
A survey in the end of November 2015 had revealed that 2,159 males, 861 women and 674 kids went for open defecation. These details were mentioned in the Swacch Bharat status as well. However, the Congress councillors had raised a question on the data stating that there were more than the said number of people who went in for open defectation.