India toilet campaign lifts lid on graft - FT.com
Some 400,000-500,000 children under five die each year from diarrhoea in India, “largely caused by unhygienic practices including improper disposal of human excreta”, Mr Ramesh said. “Cleanliness is more important than godliness in this country.”
Mr Ramesh said the sanitation budget had been nearly doubled to $675m for the current financial year. The government has also drafted another law to abolish the job of manual scavenger, this time with the threat of one-year jail terms for anyone who employs one. The country’s Supreme Court last week also ordered that all schools should be provided with basic toilet facilities within six months.
India, though, has grown wearily accustomed to the rhetoric of cleanliness without seeing much in the way of new toilets, with Uttar Pradesh being an egregious example of how states fail to deliver on official promises.