Rural Sanitation in India: Policies, Programmes and Achievements

AuthorArunkumar R. Kulkarni
Published date01 December 2022
Date01 December 2022
Subject MatterArticles
Rural Sanitation in
India: Policies,
Programmes and
Arunkumar R. Kulkarni1
Recognising the importance of sanitation in human development, several policies
and programmes have been formulated and implemented to provide sanitation in
India since independence. Despite many efforts, the provision of sanitation, espe-
cially in rural areas, has been a challenging task. In this context, the article tries to
analyse the evolution of policies and performance of programmes based on the
available literature implemented after Independence. It also examines whether
the policymakers have taken into account the past lessons while formulating the
policy or programme. The analysis reveals that there has been a progressive
move in the policies and programmes towards the participatory, decentralised
and sustainable management of sanitation. Implementation has been the main
problem, but in recent years, more attention has been given in this direction.
Even after having much success in achieving sanitation, that is, 100% access to
toilets, still, many more challenges persist, especially in terms of sustainability and
waste management.
Sanitation, health, rural, open defecation, toilet
According to World Health Organization (WHO) sanitation refers to the provision
of facilities and services for the safe disposal of human urine and faeces (Water
and Sanitation Programme [WSP], 2011). Sanitation is a basic need of all human
beings and denying access to sanitation is denying basic human rights. The UN
Indian Journal of Public
68(4) 691–704, 2022
© 2022 IIPA
Reprints and permissions:
DOI: 10.1177/00195561221109122
1 Centre for Multi-disciplinary Development Research, Dharwad, Karnataka, India.
Corresponding author:
Arunkumar R. Kulkarni, Centre for Multi-disciplinary Development Research, R.S. No. 9A2, Plot
No. 82 Yalakki Shetter Colony Dr. B. R. Ambedkar Nagar, Dharwad, Karnataka 580004, India.

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