Ward officers now have the authority to construct community toilets 

Mumbai : After a persistent campaign for ‘Right to Pee’ along with prominent NGOs from Mumbai, the city’s women now have relief. The civic body has proposed to speed up the construction of community toilets in the city.

According to an order issued by municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta, ward officers now have the authority to construct or renovate community toilets in their wards.

Prakash Patil, deputy municipal commissioner, solid waste management (SWM), informed that the order dated August 4 will help decentralise and substantially speed up the process of construction of toilets.

Patil said, “Even now, there are various stakeholders involved but the process has become simpler and less tedious.”

He explained that the ward officers will now be in-charge of identifying the spots that need toilets to be constructed. They will send the proposal to the SWM department of the civic body. After this the e-tendering process will be initiated and a contractor will be appointed for toilet construction.

A BMC official said, “This order is based on the fact that ward officers are better aware of the requirements of their wards. Instead of the civic body conducting a survey to identify spots where toilets are really needed, we have localised the process.”

Last month, Mehta had asked all ward officers to submit blueprints of their wards to help the BMC identify spots which need toilets. BMC’s spokesperson had then informed that this exercise had not gone down well as the ward officers found the time given for the survey insufficient.

Patil said, “Instead of relaying this information to the headquarters, the ward officers can take decisions independently.”

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