From Bullet Trains To Bio-Toilets: Burgeoning India-Japan Cooperation In Railways  

From Bullet Trains To Bio-Toilets: Burgeoning India-Japan Cooperation In Railways  Bio-degradable toilet inside model rake of luxury ‘Make in India’ railway coaches (Photo by Raj K Raj/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

The Indian Railways is planning to use, on a pilot basis, Japanese technology in bio-toilets as the national transporter looks to tackle the issue of unclean toilets. A bio-toilet equipped with the Japanese technology has been installed in the Madgaon station and two more are expected to be installed at New Delhi and Varanasi stations.

It is reported that Japan will contribute around 150 bio-toilets for the purpose of trials free of cost. These toilets are expected to be installed in stations and not in trains, with the adoption of Japanese technology being contingent on the results of the trials.

The Japanese technology is said to use sawdust and a special churning system for the purposes of processing faecal matter, unlike the Indian system, which is bacteria- driven. Complaints have been mounting in recent years in respect of the bio-toilets installed by the Indian Railways, which are said to suffer from a faulty flushing system and inadequate water. A Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report had observed that a problem of foul smell plagued 223 bio-toilets installed by the railways. In a bid to address these concerns, the railways has decided to trial the Japanese technology, which is hoped to achieve better results.