Maharashtra Panchayat Chief 'Garlands' Women for Defecating in Open
The two women, according to the locals of Chikmahud village, were laborers and didn't have access to toilets. The ZP CEO, reportedly, shared photographs with media persons, too.
New Delhi: Maharashtra government's efforts to ensure that rural Maharashtra is declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) by March next year took a humiliating turn after a Zilla Parishad (ZP) CEO in Solapur district “garlanded” two women for defecating in the open. The CEO drew the ire women activists for his eccentric ways to implement “Swachhta”.
The two women, according to the locals of Chikmahud village, were laborers and didn't have access to toilets. The ZP CEO, Rajendra Bharud, reportedly, shared photographs with media persons, too.
The CEO, an IAS officer, was in the village to spread awareness about cleanliness and felicitated the two women when they were returning after defecating in the open. He, later, denied that he "garlanded or shamed" women, adding that it was a local self-help group that was involved in this activity.
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had last Sunday declared urban Maharashtra open defecation free and said that an 'ODF Watch' mechanism was being established to "shame" people found relieving themselves in the open.
"Declaration of urban Maharashtra Open Defecation Free is not just a formality. A three-tier validation process had been adopted where the cities, which became ODF were first inspected by the local administration, then by the state government and lastly a central agency gave its nod," Fadnavis had said.
He added that making the state ODF will not achieve its objectives until people changed their mindset.
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