Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Human Rights Commission (OHRC) has issued a notice to the Women and Child Development Department of Odisha to submit its report on Anganwadi centers having no toilets in the state within four weeks.
Acting on the complaint filed by Akhand, a rights activist of Bhubaneswar-based Civil Society Forum on Human Rights (CSFHR), the Commission has asked WCD secretary to inquire the matter and submit a reply within four weeks.
It is to be noted that more than 53 thousand Anganwadi centers do not have their own toilets. As many as 71,302 Anganwadi centers are functioning in the state, but 53,232 do not have toilets for the children.
While sanction has been given for the construction of toilets at 71,302 of the AWCs, under the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) scheme, the state has constructed toilets at only 18,074 AWCs.
Of the 18,074 toilets, only 12,285 are functional and 3,097 toilets have water supply connections. As many as 5,789 centers have toilets but these are nonfunctional, said the petitioner.
Of the 18,074 toilets constructed, only 359 toilets have a flush system, while 13,926 are pit type latrines and 760 have only urinals. Not all of these are functional, alleged Akhand.
These centers are being set up to provide supplementary nutrition, nonformal pre-education, health, education, immunization, and health check-up and referral services. But above statistics shows that they lack facilities for basic sanitation, which is integral to healthcare.
“Due to lack of toilets and well sanitation, the children are suffered much and even risk to the various diseases,” alleged the petitioner.