A toilet in structure only is not a toilet in reality

Supreme Court: Considering the urgency in the matter with regard to the pathetic state of the toilets in the schools which may lead to severe health problems to the students, a bench of Dipak Misra and Prafulla C. Pant JJ ordered the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana to frame a Scheme and file it before this Court within 4 weeks, and also directed the Secretary to the Government, School Education Department of both the States to remain personally present before this Court on the next hearing (10-03-2015).

In the instant case, the committee headed by learned Senior Counsel Ashok Gupta submitted a report expressing its dissatisfaction with regard to the acceptable state of the toilets in the schools. The committee submitted that “though there are structures relating to toilets, yet conditions require to be enhanced to make it acceptable as there has to be continuous maintenance”. J.K. Raju, the petitioner-in person, submitted that “though this Court has directed the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana to form a scheme, yet the schemes have not been framed”.

The Court observed that “it can be said without any fear of contradiction that a toilet in structure only is not a toilet in reality. Toilets meant for schools, which are co-educational and girl’s schools have to have such toilets which are clean and acceptable having proper facilities”. The Court noted that “the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana (which are in focus in the present case) cannot have innovative ideas to construct a structure, christen it as a toilet and thereafter forget it from their memory”. The Court while stating that the authorities of the two States has to borne in their mind that clean and safe toilets also help in sustaining the health conditions of the students who use it, and ordered the States to frame a Scheme and file it before the Court within 4 weeks. J.K. Raju v. State of Andhra Pradesh2015 SCC OnLine SC 65decided on 27-01-2015).

 

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