Environmental Sanitation and Eradication of Scavenging in India is a comprehensive sociological treatise based on extraordinary research by Bindeshwar Pathak.
The book presents an in-depth understanding of the evolution of sanitation movement coupled with an account of a social awakening for the emancipation of manual scavengers, formerly known as 'untouchables', who faced severe discrimination as they belonged to the lowest stratum of India's caste-based society.
It attempts at a comprehensive critique of the policies and programme of environmental sanitation and liberation of scavengers. In the
overall context of environmental sanitation and eradication of scavenging, it basically aims at studying the historical context in which
scavenging originated and developed; examining its linkages with ecology, health, hygiene and environmental sanitation; probing into various reformative and rehabilitative measures undertaken by a good number of social reformers, voluntary action groups, Governmental and international agencies for the liberation and social upgradation of scavengers; analyzing the policies, programme and problems of low-cost sanitation schemes by Central and State governments; underscoring the pioneering efforts of Sulabh International and its outstanding achievements in the field of environmental sanitation and eradication of scavenging; describing and discussing the relevance of sanitation movement in the liberation of scavengers and the linkages of the liberation programme to the improvement in environmental sanitation; presenting an overarching view of the constraints in the implementation of policies envisioning a better environmental sanitation scenario and a brighter future for the scavengers; and finally, furnishing a sociological perspective on all important dimensions of environental sanitation and eradication of scavenging in India
It also provides a definitive account of the ideas behind the invention of a two-pit toilet technology that eventually led to the creation and growth of the prestigious social organisation Sulabh International.
Sulabh toilets later became a household name in India, and its designs are recognised as globally accepted solution to the problems and challenges of providing affordable toilets to the millions of people around the world. The United Nations for Human Settlements has recognised Sulabh toilets as "cost effective and appropriate sanitation system". It was also accepted by the Government of India, UNICEF, World Bank UNDP, WHO, etc.
The book presents a comprehensive perspective on the sanitation and eradication of scavenging in India, with the solution on how to holistically tackle them by combining political and administrative will, community participation and use of affordable technology.
About the Author(s)
Dr. Bindeshwar Pathak is one of the greatest living Indians, whose contribution in the field of sanitation and his relentless fight to restore the dignity and the rights of India's untouchables-the manual scavengers are historic and well known.
He is the Founder of Sulabh International, one of the largest NGOs in the world. His innovation of two-pit-flush technology has helped provide low cost environment friendly toilets to millions of people in the developing world. He is acclaimed as an international expert on sanitation, and his innovation popularly known as Sulabh Shauchalaya System is recommended as a global best practice by the United National Centre for Human Settlements. He is globally recognised as a sanitation crusader, a social transformer and an inspirational leader, who has changed the lives and attitudes of millions of people.