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| Last Updated:21/05/2014

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Latest News

Hoarding compares men defecating in open to dogs

The Indian Express, 07 May 2014


An attempt to shame those who defecate in the open by comparing them to animals has evoked a strong reaction in Madhya Pradesh’s Harda district.


A hoarding showing a man and a dog defecating in the open — with a caption that read: “Animals can’t use toilets but you can. Have you built your toilet?” — was stoned by vandals within 24 hours of being erected.


The administration, however, claimed they had received a “positive response to the campaign” in the district where about 27,000 families don’t have a toilet at home.


“We haven’t spent anything on traditional messages because they are not effective. Everyone is aware of the campaign against open defecation but they are not ready to change,” chief executive officer of Harda district panchayat, Ganesh Shankar Mishra, said while explaining “operation mal yudhha”.


The hoarding that was stoned Saturday was erected in the district panchayat building. But people living nearby said the hoarding was offensive and wanted it removed.


Social activists also felt it was in poor taste. “If we put officers and dogs on the same hoarding to compare their shouting with barking, will they accept it?” asked Anurag Modi of the Shramik Adivasi Sangathan.


However, Mishra said the administration had come up with the strategy after talking to sarpanches and other stakeholders. “It’s a brave step that required guts,” he said.