Hyderabad needs to be toilet trained

Published Nov 19, 2013, 1:56 pm IST
Updated Mar 18, 2019, 7:04 pm IST
World Toilet Day: Men pee on roadside, make public toilets practically unusable for women.

Hyderabad: The state government’s build-operatetransfer system of public toilet functioning has ended up commercialising the toilet business, said the stakeholders on the World Toilet Day observed on November 19.

The system has several setbacks — lack of cleanliness, improper maintenance and lack of water in the currently operating public toilets. Only people who have no option and have to relieve themselves urgently use public toilets.


The situation in most markets of the city is very depressing with toilets being made mandatory only for commercial complexes, malls, restaurants etc. Ramesh Kumar, a wholesale saree merchant in Monda Market, says, “The community toilet is not maintained properly by the contractor and whenever we complain to the authorities, he does not allow our workers to use the toilet.

Workers, who work in the market from 9am to 8 pm, need to use the toilet once in two-three hours. For every toilet visit, the contractor charges Rs 5. For market areas, there must be a fixed price or a minimal charge.”


For women, things are worse. A salesgirl of a cosmetic shop in General Bazaar said, “We always go to the toilet in a group. In the women’s section we demand that the caretaker be a woman. Most of the times we are not able to the toilet as it is very dirty. Most of us have learnt to control our bladders.”

This in turn does exerts too much of pressure on their bladder and it is one of the leading causes of urinary infection in women. 

Next: People do not flush in RGIA

People do not flush in RGIA

Amrita didyala | DC

Hyderabad: Public transport systems like trains and buses give a tough time to women passengers with very few toilets available, and most of them anyway are filthy and stinking. Bus stops and even railway station continue to have badly maintained toilets despite of modernisation.


The worst hit by the lack of proper sanitation facilities are women passengers and women ticket conductors onboard city buses who put in long hours. They are forced to make do with the barely clean toilets at the bus stops.

“It is difficult to go on with our duty throughout the day as there are barely any facilities for women. There are days when I hardly get a chance to use a toilet during my work hours as in some bus stops the washrooms are really not usable,” said S. Lakshmi, a bus conductor.

Also to be blamed is the lack of sanitation culture among people that compels sanitation staff to remind people to flush even at the city’s ultra-modern Shamshabad airport. Even a senior railway official said, “It is not that the trains don’t have washrooms. They are properly cleaned after each long distance journey, but the way people use it, the washrooms become dirty within half-an-hour.”


Next: Good public toilets cost Rs 20L

Good public toilets cost Rs 20L

Hyderabad: Building good toilets requires a minimum of Rs 15 lakh to Rs 20 lakh, reveal various agencies that are into the business of constructing toilets.

A good toilet complex with 10 pots, urinals, bathing areas and hand wash areas requires a good amount of space, ventilation and lighting. A little space for beautification is also recommended, as people should ‘want’ to enter the area.

The upkeep of a toilet area like this requires a monthly maintenance of Rs 20,000 to Rs 25,000 with four workers (round-the-clock) for cleaning purposes. Despite their maintenance by various agencies, it is also important for the toilet users to keep the premises clean.


Sulabh International Organisations Hydera-bad controller P.C. Gupta says, “It is important for the caretaker to ask the people to maintain hygi-ene. Most of the people do not use water, they often break the light bulbs, break the toilet seat and do not use it properly making it very difficult for others to use the toilet.

Therefore, if the caretaker feels that a person may not know how to use the toilet, then he must instruct the person on the proper way to use the toilet. The toilet must also be inspected after it has been used. There are many challenges, but that does not mean that we must not provide a good, clean and hygienic facility.”


A GHMC sanitation officer said, “The life of a public toilet is not very long as constant repairs are needed due to continuous use. The drains around the toilets need to be cleaned once a month as they get blocked. The borewell must pump eno-ugh water. With these additional costs it is very important that people use the toilets carefully.”

Location: Andhra Pradesh