Published: 16th July 2019
Swacch Bharat effect? All government schools in Karnataka to have toilets by October 1
Government schools that do not have toilets will get them under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA), according to the Department of Public Instruction.
The annual report of the DPI pointed out that in Karnataka, 4,197 out of 48,188 government schools, including 4,696 high schools, do not have toilets. As many as 2,847 boy's schools and 1,350 girl's schools do not have toilets.
The Chief Secretary has instructed DPI officials to get the toilets constructed under MNREGA funds before Gandhi Jayanti on October 2 this year. The Chief Secretary also pointed out that during the 2018 Assembly elections and 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the state government had released funds to ensure water and toilet facilities at government schools, which were also polling booths. These funds were deposited to the headmasters through the Block Education Officers. "If there are no toilets even today, what happened to the funds released?" he asked the DPI officials, adding that if the funds were not utilised, these have to be refunded.
According to the DPI circular, the deputy director has to create a WhatsApp group of government schools in his or her limits and conduct a survey of toilets every Thursday. This information has to be sent to the DPI head office.
The circular states that the number of toilets should be constructed as per the student ratio. They have to make an action plan and send it to the Zilla Panchayat offices concerned for the construction of toilets. "The list of schools that do not have toilets should be sent on or before August 30 and toilets should be constructed by October 1. Even after this, if they get complaints that some schools do not have toilets, action will be taken against the officials concerned,'' the circular said.