The US Army has shown interest in replicating the low cost Sulabh public toilet system for war-ravaged Afghanistan.
Holding the charge of rebuilding of the war torn country, the US Army plans to construct 40 public toilet complexes linked with biogas digester application, a low cost toilet model designed and developed by the Sulabh International, founder of the NGO Bindeshwar Pathak said.
A senior official of the US Army, looking after the reconstruction aspect of the towns, has expressed desire to get detailed concept report about the biogas based Sulabh public toilet system.
In a communication to the Sulabh International, Edward T Mears stated that the Engineering and Facilities wing of the US Army wished to pursue the concept of construction of public toilets at around 40 places in Kandahar, the second most important city after Kabul.
The US Army wants to learn the design plans for existing Sulabh community toilets, which are being maintained by Kabul Municipality and share these with the Afghanistan Ministry of Energy and Water.
Sulabh International implemented five public toilets linked with biogas plants in Kabul in collaboration with the Kabul Municipality about three years ago. These plants were funded by India.
Pathak, a pioneer in the field of sanitation, said he has assured all possible assistance to the US Army for the construction of biogas linked public toilets in Afghanistan.
All the public toilets are socially acceptable and economically sustainable as they are based on pay and use system. All biogas plants are functioning well, he said adding that recycling and reuse of human excreta for biogas generation is an important way to get rid of health hazards.
He said Sulabh International would construct public toilets in developing countries to popularise the Indian low cost toilet system. The NGO has been playing a key role in construction of public toilets in several countries including Afghanistan, South Africa, China, Bhutan, Nepal, Laos, Ethiopia and 10 other African countries. It has already constructed public toilets in some of these countries, Pathak added.
By: Devesh D. Bhuwad