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Basic Film

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  • Best Social Film Award in 8th Nashik International Film Festival.
Award Received by Basic Film

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The Great PMC Loo Trick

mid-day
20 March 2012
By Priyankka Deshpande
Civic body says nearly 1,300 public toilets in city, but PIL reveals more than 50% of these facilities remain inaccessible to vast majority of women by virtue of being located in various PMC buildings or slum areas instead of roads.
Various NGOs, social activists and several women have been crying hoarse about the scarcity of public toilets for women in the city, but PMC officials claim to have nearly 1,300 urinals for women within the jurisdiction of the civic body. Yet, it seems the statistics do not tell the full story, as facts dug out by an activist reveal a picture that is not very encouraging.
The Great PMC Loo Trick Health activist Chetan Gandhi had filed a public interest litigation to know the present status of public toilets in the city and the high court provided him with an affidavit that revealed some surprising figures. The affidavit mentions that the civic body has 603 and 229 public toilets in PMC's public buildings and at the community level respectively, 405 on pay–and–use basis and 62 on the roads in the city.
"There are only 62 women's toilets located on roads in the city. However, after the survey conducted three months ago with PMC officials, we have found that many of these toilets are in a bad condition," said Gandhi.
The community level toilets include locations in residential areas, slums and chawls and the remaining toilets are located in PMC public buildings, including government schools and colleges, hospitals and public parks along with all ward offices.
"It's inconsiderate to count the toilets placed in such areas that are not easily accessible to women. It's impractical for women to reach public parks or to enter slum areas or any ward office to use a public toilet. Therefore, in a way the PMC has played a trick with these women citizens by showing on documents that a huge number of women toilets exist in the city," Gandhi added.
Waste of funds
Gandhi also said that every year huge amount of money is kept aside for gender budget, but the civic body wastes it in cultural events for women or on projects like mother and child care instead of using it for the basic need of the women.
Gandhi said that in November, Deputy Municipal Commissioner Suresh Jagtap had called a meeting to gather information about development in respect to construction as well as maintenance of public toilets. However, according to Gandhi nothing concrete came out of that meeting.
"I had put forward the idea of moving toilets on an experimental basis and officials present there agreed. But no development has happened," Gandhi said.
Gandhi, members of an NGO and PMC officials visited public toilets in various areas of the city three months ago and found them in a pathetic condition.
"It's unfortunate to say that these officials, which include the health observers themselves, didn't have any idea of the exact location of these public urinals. After going to the spot, almost all the public toilets which we have located in the areas of Simla Office, BMCC Road and Prabhat Road were in a bad condition," Gandhi said.
Skirting the issue
Gandhi added that the officials avoided the matter when asked, saying that maintenance work was going on.

Read more: The Great PMC Loo Trick

आरोग्याचे प्रश्‍न मांडण्यासाठी चित्रपट माध्यम प्रभावी

सकाळ वृत्तसेवा
०४ डिसेंबर २०११
पुणे, भारत

“आरोग्याचे प्रश्‍न मांडण्यासाठी आणि ते सोडविण्यासाठी चित्रपट हे प्रभावी माध्यम आहे,” असे प्रतिपादन “राष्ट्रीय ग्रामीण आरोग्य अभियान'चे (एनआरएचएम) संचालक विकास खारगे यांनी शनिवारी येथे केल”.

"पी. एम. शहा फाउंडेशन' आणि "वर्धमान प्रतिष्ठान' यांच्यातर्फे आयोजित केलेल्या दुसऱ्या आरोग्य विषयावरील चित्रपट महोत्सवाचे उद्‌घाटन खारगे यांच्या हस्ते करण्यात आले. त्या वेळी ते बोलत होते.

Read more: आरोग्याचे प्रश्‍न मांडण्यासाठी चित्रपट माध्यम प्रभावी

Over 70 Civic Schools Flouting Sanitation Norms, Finds RTI Plea

Times of India
18 January 2012
By Swati Shinde Gole
Pune India

91 Schools Lack Clean Drinking Water Tanks, Finds Another Petition

Seventy-seven schools run by the Pune Municipal Corporation do not have sanitation facilities in tune with the norms set by the Union ministry of rural development’s department of drinking water supply, a Right to Information Act (RTI) application by P M Shah Foundation has found.

Lack of proper sanitation facilities was one of the reasons girls dropped out of school.

The information was sought from the civic education board. The board replied that it runs about 247 schools and that only Rs 21 lakh from a budget of Rs 2crore allotted for 2010-11 to provide sanitation and toilet facilities in civic schools has been utilised.

The plea asked the civic board if they were following government norms of allotting one toilet for every 40 students in a school. In another query, it was also found that 91 schools do not clean drinking water tanks and repair works to fix leaking tanks are pending.

“We asked the civic body about efforts taken to provide clean drinking water to students. The board replied that there is no budget allotted for such a purpose. It was disappointing to see the condition of civic schools in the city despite funds being available,” director of P M Shah Foundation Chetan Gandhi said.

The education board received Rs 4.5 crore for purchase of school uniforms in 2008-09, he said. “However, due to a dispute in the purchase, the amount was kept in the custody of the high court. The civic body sought permission from the high court to use the amount for providing clean drinking water to students, which was granted. But, the reply to our query on how much has been spent on clean drinking water revealed that it has been unused for over a year now.”

Sangeeta Tiwari, who heads the education board, said, “It is the responsibility of the ward office to see to it that sanitation and drinking facilities are provided to schools running in their wards. Constructing new toilets in schools is not possible as the land is on lease and owners do not give permission for such development.” Tiwari also denied that there was any budget for drinking water and that the Rs two crore budget is only for cleanliness and sanitation purposes.

Norms by Union ministry of rural development

  • Toilets in all types of government schools including primary, upper primary, secondary, higher secondary and anganwadis should be constructed
  • Separate toilets for girls and boys should be constructed in case of co-educational schools
  • One urinal space may be provided for every 20 to 40 boys or girls separately

Toilets Scarce or None at All, Students ‘Ration’ Water Intake

Indian Express
12 October 2011
Pune, India

Toilets Scarce or None at All, Students ‘Ration’ Water Intake “We don’t drink too much water before coming to school so that we don’t have to use the public toilet that is always dirty. In case it is very urgent, we take permission from the teacher and go home.” This is what a class X student of a school run by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) revealed.

The reply to an RTI query by an advocate shows many PMC-run schools do not have proper toilets. In some schools, there are no separate toilets for girls and in some others, there is no toilet at all, which is against government guidelines that make it mandatory for schools to have a toilet for every 40 students.

Read more: Toilets Scarce or None at All, Students ‘Ration’ Water Intake

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