Of all the rural households that have access to toilets, over 93 per cent use them, National Annual Rural Sanitation Survey (NARSS) has revealed.
The share of rural households that have access to toilets has grown from just 40 per cent when Prime Minister Narendra Modi took office in 2014 to over 77 per cent. Modi has pushed for adoption of toilets under the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
The survey, conducted between mid-November 2017 and mid-March 2018, covered 92,040 households in 6,136 villages.
The survey reconfirmed the Open Defecation-Free status of 96 percent of villages and found that remaining 4.4 per cent villages also had sanitation coverage of over 95 per cent, the Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation has said.
The survey was conducted by an independent agency and its findings were presented to an Expert Working Group which had representatives from organizations including the World Bank, the United Nations Children's Fund, Water Aid, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, India Sanitation Coalition, Sulabh International, Knowledge Links, NITI Aayog and Ministry of Statistics and Program Implementation.
According to the Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation, over 300 million people have stopped defecating in the open since the Swachh Bharat Mission began. The number of people defecating in the open was around 550 million at the beginning of the programme. Under the mission, over 6.5 crore toilets have been built across rural India, and over 3.38 lakh villages and 338 districts have been declared ODF.