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Mumbai: BMC halts construction of toilet seats in community toilets, 50% work done till now

10:43 PM Nov 29, 2021 | Dipti Singh

After completing over 50 per cent work of total toilets to be built under the Slum Sanitation Plan, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has decided to scrap the project of constructing toilet seats of community toilets after conducting a survey. It took around three years for the civic body to complete only 56 per cent of work under the Slum Sanitation Plan, as the contractors have blamed the COVID-19 pandemic for the delay in the work.

The civic body cleared proposals worth Rs 422 crores in January 2019 for constructing 22,774 toilets for total 1164 toilet blocks across Mumbai under 'Contract Lot-11 (R)' scheme, of which only 20 per cent were completed till August- September 2020. Targeting the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan ranking the civic body expedite the work of constructing toilet blocks. The project’s aim was to bring down the user-toilet ratio in community / public toilets. However according to civic officials, the scheme hit a road block due to lockdown later due to space issues.


"There are many areas, where there is no suitable space for constructing toilet blocks. Hence work in those areas has come to a standstill," said a BMC official.

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In 2017, BMC had decided to construct 16,703 toilet seats in place of the old 14,173 toilet seats. In 2018, the procedure for tender took place, and a year later, in 2019, the standing committee approved the project. Based on the Census slum population figures, there is currently one toilet seat per 42 men and 34 women, while the SBM prescribes one seat for 35 men and 25 women respectively.

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The locals who require this facility have expressed inconvenience as the delayed project did them no good and now the complete scrapping of the project has led to inconvenience. Almost all the Mumbai slums are facing the same issue. To resolve this issue BMC decided to sanction bio-toilets in each of the 24 administrative wards however the scheme too has not worked well i many wards On such example is L ward (Kurla).

NCP corporator from Kurla Dr Saeeda Khan came down heavily on the civic adminsitration stating that existing toilets are in a bad shape, cleaning detergents are not available many times and are left unclean. "Unclean unusable toilets are one things. Because of space I got bio-toilets in my ward, of the four seat sanctioned for my ward water connection has not be done in all four toilet seats," added Khan.

Dr Sangita Hasnale, Deputy Municipal Commissioner (Solid Waste Management), said that they have already reviewed the situation and decided that project could not be completed due to various problems that were not analyzed earlier. Following which she ordered the contractors and officials at ward level to complete the ongoing project as soon as possible. "Many projects that have hit a road block have been cancelled, they will begin once again following a survey," Hasnale said.

Also Read: Mumbai: BEST conductors to verify COVID-19 vaccine certificates of passengers to allow travel

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