PHE&WS minister suggested using mineral water bottles and local materials for the construction of IHHL and experimentation with plastic drums for septic tanks Credit: Representational image

ITANAGAR: The Public Health Engineering and Water Supply department has achieved the target of making Arunachal Pradesh open defecation-free, PHE and Water Sanitation (PHE&WS) secretary Rinchin Tashi said at a review meeting on Wednesday.

Tashi had chaired the meeting of PHE&WS, the nodal department for the implementation of Swachh Bharat Mission (Grameen).

PHE&WS minister Wangki Lowang attended the meeting with senior officers and field functionaries of the department.

Tashi said the ODF milestone was achieved in a time-bound manner and ahead of the targeted date. He said that the Ministry of Jal Shakti had launched Phase-II of SBM (Grameen) in February 2020 to focus on the sustainability of the ODF status and Solid & Liquid Waste Management (SLWM) that has to be completed within 2024-25 in mission mode.

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Minister Lowang appreciated the officials for their holistic approach to SBM (G) and drive for achieving the goals despite limited resources.

“We must continue to change the mindset of the people to ensure the sustainability of ODF plus and ODF status, waste management and see that no village is left behind in the overall cleanliness campaign,” he said.

The minister suggested using mineral water bottles and local materials for the construction of individual household latrines (IHHL) and experimentation with plastic drums for septic tanks.

Lowang appreciated the department’s performance in the Phase-I of SBM (G).

Earlier, SBM (G) mission director Sentum Yomcha explained the finer points of the mission to the field level officers.

The first day of the meeting concluded with Tashi advising the district officials to visit sites frequently for proper implementation and monitoring of projects.

The second day saw resource persons from the Jal Shakti Ministry providing presentations on various aspects of SBM (G), including wet, plastic and biodegradable waste management, utilisation of cow dung, greywater and faecal sludge management besides gaps in IHHL and retrofitting.

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