"Development policies become more effective when combined with insights into human behavior." Critically comment in context of Swachh Bharat Mission.

Swachh Bharat Abhiyan  is a campaign by the Government of India to keep the streets, roads and infrastructure of the country’s cities and towns and its rural areas clean. It aims to make rural and urban areas open defecation free by 2019.

  • Under the programme toilet construction was undertaken at expeditiously leading to 64% increase from 2014-15 to 2015-16.
  • Swachhta Status Report of the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO), in 2015, more than half of the rural population (52.1 per cent) of the country still defecates in open.
  • Installing dust bins at public places have not resulted in lesser waste on roads.
  • As these habits are deeply ingrained among people.
  • Open defecation is also part of rural culture and using toilets inside the home is considered impure.
  • Thus in order to change people’s attitude towards usage of toilet it is necessary to create awareness.
  • The World Bank has documented some of the pilots. One such study found that open defecation dropped 11% from very high levels after a community-led total sanitation programme was combined in a few chosen villages with the standard approach of subsidies for toilet construction and information on the transmission of diseases.

Designing policies which take into account human behavior are more successful as many policies designed to bring about positive change need to eliminate/modify older mindset/habits for instance institutional deliveries, vaccination.


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