Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/4/2014 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (

Open defecation remains ongoing practice in many areas

While many African villages have made headway in combating such deadly disease as cholera with the mandated use of indoor flush toilets, the idea still hasn't caught on in many rural parts of India. Open defecation is still widely practiced there, in spite of the spread of debilitating diseases.

India's cast system has led to a select class of women called 'night soil gatherers,' women who gather feces from non-flush toilets.

India's cast system has led to a select class of women called "night soil gatherers," women who gather feces from non-flush toilets.


By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (

8/4/2014 (2 years ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: India, sanitation, flush toilets, open defecation, diseases

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - There are several cultural norms working against flush toilets in rural India. One mother, who along with her four children eschew toilets to defecate n an open field, says that toilets are only for "city-dwellers who don't have space to go in the open . Feces don't belong under the same roof as where we eat and sleep."

Attitudes such as these may prove to be Prime Minister Narendra Modi's biggest challenge in combating the world's biggest sanitation problem. Open defecation costs India 600,000 lives annually from diarrhea and exposes a third of the nation's women to the risk of rape or sexual assault.

SAVE Iraqi Christians from Genocide --

Without toilets for half the population, Modi promised to build 5.3 million latrines by the end of his first 100 days in office, which would be one a second until Aug. 31, according to the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation.

"Targets for construction of toilets are somewhat irrelevant to resolving the sanitation problem," Yamini Aiyar, director of policy research group Accountability Initiative in New Delhi says. "Building toilets does not mean that people will use them and there seems to be a host of cultural, social and caste-based reasons for that. People need to be taught the value of sanitation."

These needs are not being addressed. More than half of the country's sanitation education budget since 1999 hasn't been spent, according to the Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation. In at least five of India's poorest states, the majority of people in households with a government latrine don't use it.

The government has set Mahatma Gandhi's 150th birthday in 2019 as its target for achieving "total sanitation," including access to toilets for all 1.2 billion residents, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in his budget speech earlier this month.

While Jaitley doubled spending on new toilets to 40 billion rupees, the ratio of those funds that can be spent on information, education and communication, remains at 15 percent.

About 100,000 tons of Indian villager's excrement heads to markets every day on fruit and vegetables, according to UNICEF, the United Nations children's fund. Each gram of feces in an open field contains 10 million viruses, one million bacteria and 1,000 parasite cysts.

The feces n turn contaminates groundwater, causing illnesses such as diarrhea and cholera, and deters tourists whose immune systems are at the highest risk from the drug-resistant strains of fecal bacteria.


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for SEPTEMBER 2016
Centrality of the Human Person: That each may contribute to the common good and to the building of a society that places the human person at the center.
Evangelization: Mission to Evangelize: That by participating in the Sacraments and meditating on Scripture, Christians may become more aware of their mission to evangelize.


More Asia Pacific

The other side of the Philippines' war on drugs - 7-year-old girl murdered by drug dealer, prompting more support for Duterte Watch

Image of The parents of a 7-year-old victim mourn the loss of their daughter (Reuters).


A 7-year-old girl was murdered by an alleged drug dealer in the Philippines, highlighting the atrocities occurring at the hands of drug dealers and users in the country. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Many have come against Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte's ... continue reading

They're paid HOW MUCH? Husband and wife assassins in the Philippines reveal how much they're paid for killing drug addicts Watch

Image of Assassins are paid for their work, and rely on the income to feed their family.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A husband and wife death squad are dispensing justice -or murder in the Philippines, depending on how you look at the situation. The pair were recently interviewed for the media. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - A couple who live in the Philippines says they have ... continue reading

Vatican to recognize four Chinese bishops - are better relations coming? Watch

Image of Are relations between China and the Vatican improving?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Vatican has agreed to recognize at least four bishops appointed by the Chinese government. This is a historic moment, but it comes as the Church continues to face persecution in China. The Vatican is hopeful that such persecution will soon end as the two entities ... continue reading

Famed British explorer headed to high Buhtan to find the Yeti Watch

Image of Is the Yeti a long-surviving example Gigantopithecus?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A British explorer and skeptic is visiting high Bhutan in search of the Yeti, a creature that many locals say exists. Alistair Humphreys does not believe in the Yeti, but he thinks he may be able to uncover evidence that it is another, misidentified creature. He is ... continue reading

Philippine police van rams anti-US protesters then REVERSES to hit them AGAIN Watch

Image of Anti-US protestors were struck with a police van, which then backed up over the crowd to hit them again.


Anti-U.S. protesters outside the U.S. embassy in Manilla, Philippines, demanded American troops leave their country. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Several protesters took to Twitter to share their version of events.Many posted the graphic video of a Philippine ... continue reading

If America wants to maintain alliance with Philippines, it will have to use a secret weapon: RESPECT Watch

Image of President Duterte met with the Chinese ambassador to the Philippines in September.


As Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte meets with the Chinese, Americans are worried about the future of the alliance between them and the Philippines. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - President Duterte is meeting with Chinese officials to discuss cooperation in ... continue reading

WATCH NOW Jungle Giant or optical illusion? 'Bigfoot' footage reveals colossal creature in Indonesia Watch

Image of Was Bigfoot sighted in Indonesia (YouTube)?


We've all heard the tales and seen the blurry footage but a new video claims to have captured evidence of the ever-elusive mythic creature: Bigfoot. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - For years the legendary creature is said to have resided in North America, is ... continue reading

Thank you St. Philomena! - Miracle baby survives 14 stab wounds and being buried alive Watch

Image of The 7-month-old was discovered in a shallow grave (SWNS).


St. Philomena was certainly watching over baby Aiden, who was left to die alone in a shallow grave in Thailand. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Little Aidin was stabbed fourteen times then abandoned in a shallow grave, where cattle herder Kachit Krongyut was ... continue reading

You won't believe what President Duterte is doing now - How will the Philippines accept this change? Watch

Image of Marlboro country no more, public smoking to be banned in the Philippines.


Philippine President, Rodrigo Duterte is about to ban smoking in all public places, including e-cigs. The ban has long been advocated by public health agencies in the Philippines. A similar ban was in place in Davao City where Duterte was mayor before becoming ... continue reading

Duterte orders US troops to leave - Is the 65-year-agreement at an end? Watch

Image of Duterte has made amazing strides in the war on drugs.


Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has put an end to the 65-year joint military contract with the US. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Over the weekend, Duterte informed the US the Philippines would no longer participate in joint patrols in the South China Sea.The ... continue reading

All Asia Pacific News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 4:32--5:8
32 Be generous to one another, sympathetic, forgiving each other as ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 1:1-2, 3, 4, 6
1 How blessed is anyone who rejects the advice of the wicked and does not ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 13:10-17
10 One Sabbath day he was teaching in one of the synagogues,11 ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 24th, 2016 Image

St. Anthony Mary Claret
October 24: Claretian archbishop and founder. Anthony was ... Read More