The three remaining districts of the border state – Upper Subansiri, Siang and Changlang – were declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) officially on 31 December, an official release said.
Arunachal Pradesh has 21 districts and the state attained the goal nearly two years before the national deadline of 2 October, 2019.
The state government had cut short the ODF target by one year and 10 months ahead of the national target and set 31 December as the deadline.
The project undertaken under the Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) or SBM (G) saw the light of day only after the state government extended an incentive of Rs 8,000 per toilet in addition to the Centre's support of Rs 12,000, thereby raising the grant for constructing a toilet to Rs 20,000.
The state also launched the Swachh Arunachal Mission on 2 October this year at Tawang which envisaged the Swachh Protocol (Cleanliness Protocol) aimed at ensuring sustainability of assets created under SBM (G).
“I am personally overwhelmed to find people participating in construction of toilets even in remote villages along the international borders like Vijaynagar, Taksing, Pipsorang despite communication bottlenecks requiring strenuous trekking for days together carrying construction materials along with ration on head load,” Chief Minister Pema Khandu said while crediting the accomplishment to the people.
“Today we attain freedom from open defecation. We have finally won the battle and liberated ourselves from the open defecation menace. The tiring and rigorous fight against open defecation was a herculean task but not impossible, state Public Health Engineering & Water Supply Minister Bamang Felix said.
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