Responsive Governance Supports Rajendrapura Colony in Ajmer
Rajendrapura is a closed settlement having congested spaces and is devoid of individual toilets or any community toilet. It is a nearly 70-year-old settlement, situated within the city centre in Ward 51 of Ajmer. There are 45 families living in this notified settlement of Ajmer Municipal Corporation. Residents are engaged in daily wage, scrap collection, while women work as maids. There are no individual toilets in households and all families practise open defecation. Mr. Anil Moyle is a ward councillor who is active and ready to listen to suggestions from the community and PRIA. In earlier interactions with the councillor, the team discussed the issue of open defecation and explored options of individual toilets and community toilets.
During the household mobile survey in Rajendrapura Slum on September 22, 2016 the team noticed that there are heaps of garbage spread all over and drains are blocked. Settlement Improvement Committee (SIC) members also discussed and complained about the worsening sanitation conditions in their settlement. SIC members supported by PRIA had a conversation with the Sanitation Inspector in charge for the ward. At the request of SIC members he made an official visit to Rajendrapura. The SIC members showed the heaps of garbage and blocked drains and talked about the absenteeism of the safai karmachari (sweeper) from the settlement.
The inspector quickly took action and called the supervisor (Jamadar) and arranged for the settlement and the drains to be cleaned He also assured that the safai karmachari will be deployed who will visit each household every day with a cart. The team and inspector requested the community members to maintain a dustbin at home and dispense the garbage to the safai karmachari every day. At the end of these interactions, the garbage was collected, cleaned and drains unblocked.
Later, Mr. Anil Mehra, engineer in charge of Swatch Bharat Mission (SBM), visited the settlement and requested the residents to apply for individual toilets. He also talked about laying sewerage line in the settlement. The issue in this congested settlement is of space and households lack any space for construction of new toilets. The team requested a mobile toilet van be arranged for until alternate arrangements can be made. The engineer requested the residents to think about building toilets on the roofs of their houses, as their houses have RCC roofs. With PRIA's support SIC members and the community are thinking of building the toilets and availing benefits being provided under SBM.
Project: Engaged Citizens, Responsive Cities, supported by EU India (2016-1019), which aims to stengthen civil society of the urban poor to participate in planning and monitoring of sanitation services in Indian cities