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TitleAssessing sanitation costs and services in Andhra Pradesh, India.
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsSnehalatha, M, V. Reddy, R, Jayakumar, N
Pagination20 p. : 1 box, 9 fig.; 2 maps; 3 tab.
Date Published2010-11-01
Place PublishedThe Hague, The Netherlands
Keywordscosts, data analysis, india andhra pradesh, open defecation, rural areas, sanitation services, service delivery, WASHCost

The Total Sanitation Campaign (TSC) is the flagship sanitation programme of efforts by the Government of India to reach the Millennium Development Goals, but it has not yet met its expectations. This paper described the methodologies and analysis of data from 20 villages across two agro-climatic zones in Andhra Pradesh on the costs of sanitation. It concludes that capital costs takes a lion share of the funding, followed by operation and maintenance costs while planning and budgeting for indirect and direct support costs and capital maintenance costs are negligible or missing. The sanitation service ladder parameters reveal that open defecation is rampant and access to sanitation facilities is far from within reach for many households. Use of toilets is much higher in NGP1 (award winning villages) than in non-NGP villages but even in NGP villages is almost always below 100%. In non-NGP villages open defecation is rampant. An intensive approach is needed to prevent villages that achieve open defection free status from slipping back and to address sanitation crisis in many non-NGP villages. Field observations, focus-group discussions and personal interviews reveal that factors such as space to construct toilets, availability of water, lack of awareness, cultural factors and traditional practices are the major constraints to making the behavioural change away from open defecation. School sanitation remains a challenge as use and maintenance of school toilets is poor and keeping them clean can bring conflicts between parents and teachers. The solid and liquid disposal systems often receive a low priority and Panchayats (local government bodies) do not receive sufficient money to address these issues. The findings indicate the need for a lifecycle cost approach to planning and budgeting, additional funds for specific cost components, targeted efforts and continuous review to address sanitation progress with specific vision and targets rather than as add-on components to water supply programmes. This approach needs to be understood at all levels so that the focus can move from just providing toilets to maintenance and use of toilets and more comprehensive programmes of hygiene promotion. This paper has been produced by members of the WASHCost (India team) which is researching the unit costs of providing water and sanitation services in rural and peri-urban areas. [Authors' abstract]


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