In news– As part of the ‘World toilet Day’, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development has launched a week long awareness campaign on SafaiMitra Suraksha Challenge (SSC) recently.
About SafaiMitra Suraksha Challenge (SSC)–
- The awareness campaign on SSC will be held from November 14th to 20th November 2021 to run up to the ‘Swachh Amrit Diwas’.
- Swachh Amrit Diwas is an award ceremony to recognize the role and efforts of the states, cities, ULBs and Cantonment Board in Swachh Survekshan 2021, and Garbage Free Star Rating certification on 20th November, 2021.
- A total of 246 cities are participating in SSC which is being conducted across the country.
- Through this challenge it is aimed to encourage cities to mechanise their sewer and septic tank cleaning operations in order to prevent deaths and fatalities of sanitation workers from ‘hazardous entry’.
- MoHUA had launched SSC on the occasion of World Toilet Day (19th November 2020) with the objective of eradicating the practice of hazardous cleaning of sewers and septic tanks and promote mechanized cleaning of the same.
- As per the timelines for the Challenge it was launched with a toolkit on 19th November 2020 and the preparatory period for it was from 20th Nov 2020 to 30th Sep 2021 and the evaluation was done in October 2021.
- Under SSC, National Safai Karamcharis Finance & Development Corporation (NSKFDC), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, supported by MoHUA are organizing Loan Melas across the country to help Safaimitras avail loans under the Swachhata Udyami Yojana (SUY) for procurement of sewer/ septic tank cleaning machine/ equipment for mechanized cleaning.
- Skill Development Trainings of Safaimitras have also been conducted through the support of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment via NSKFDC in 115 cities under SSC.
- Under SSC, Call Centre and Helpline number for safe cleaning have been operationalized in 345 cities with ‘14420’ helpline number till date for safe cleaning of septic tanks/sewers & registering complaints on hazardous cleaning.
World Toilet Day–
- It is an official United Nations international observance day on 19 November to inspire action to tackle the global sanitation crisis and help achieve Sustainable Development Goal 6 (SDG 6), which promises sanitation for all by 2030.
- The Day was designated by the UN General Assembly on 24 July 2013 by resolution A/RES/67/291.
- It is coordinated by UN-Water in collaboration with governments and partners.
- The theme for World Toilet Day 2021 is “Valuing Toilets”.
National Safai Karamcharis Finance & Development Corporation (NSKFDC)–
- It was set up for the socio economic development of Safai Karamcharis/Scavengers and their dependents through its various schemes.
- It was incorporated on 24th January, 1997 under the Companies Act as a ‘Not For Profit’ Organization.
- It is a wholly owned Government Undertaking under the aegis of Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment.
- NSKFDC commenced its operations in October, 1997.
- The primary objective of NSKFDC is to eradicate the terrible inhumane and evil practice of Manual Scavenging and to strengthen socio-economic development of Safai Karamcharis/Scavengers and their dependents by providing financial assistance in the form of various Loan Schemes.
- It conducts Training Programmes for upgrading their skills through State Channelising Agencies (SCAs) nominated by State Governments/ UTs , Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) and Nationalised Banks across the Country.