'Holy trees in Gonda to stop unholy open defecation'
One of the dirtiest places in India –Gonda –is going green to stop open defecation with the administration planting trees having religious significance in the hope of putting an end to the menace. The plan is already underway with plantation of saplings of Peepul, Mango, Neem, Banyan, Shami and Basil. They are being planted in open areas where defecation is common so as to check the menace.
The plantation drive is being carried out in 16 blocks covering 80 villages five villages from each block, Chief Development Officer Divya Mittal said. Interestingly, the administration has tried to force the people having toilet facility to change their habits through this drive by choosing villages which already have the maximum number of toilets but people continue to defecate in the open, the official said.
The areas which are frequented by the people for defecation purposes have been identified for planting the saplings, she said. Since the rural population is aware of the religious significance of these trees, they will naturally avoid these areas and opt for toilets.
As a pilot project, nearly 600 saplings were planted in Gonda district on the first day of the campaign on June 5, the International