The South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) has asked all its senior officials, including heads of departments, directors, vigilance officers and additional commissioners, to inspect their wards twice a week for open defecation — at 4 am. “Officials have been asked to conduct inspections at 4 am on Friday and Saturday. They must also upload a photo of the area on the corporation’s WhatsApp group,” said an official.
The decision was taken after the civic body failed to get an open defecation free (ODF) certificate from the Centre during its inspection last year. Officials said the SDMC does not want to miss the opportunity during the upcoming inspection in July.
On October 2 last year, the SDMC had declared its areas open defecation free. But its self-declaration couldn’t pass the union urban development ministry’s test. “Last time, open defecation was spotted near R K Puram. This year, the health department has been asked to keep an eye, and mobile toilets have been placed in several areas. The SDMC, however, wants to ensure that the situation does not arise again,” said the official.
The corporation will also take action against zonal officers if toilets are not cleaned regularly. A fine of Rs 50 will be levied on people found flouting rules. As per the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan parameters, an urban local body can only declare its wards ODF if it is successful in providing public conveniences in 75% of its areas. Also, there should be toilets within 500 metres of slum settlements.