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577 districts declared open defecation free: Min

577 districts declared open defecation free: Min

New Delhi, Dec 31 (PTI) As many as 577 districts across the country have been declared open defecation free (ODF), the Rajya Sabha was told. Out of the 577 districts, 56 districts in Uttar Pradesh were declared ODF followed by 51 in Madhya Pradesh, said Minister of State for Drinking Water and Sanitation Ramesh Chandappa Jigajinagi. According to guidelines of the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM), ODF is the termination of faecal-oral transmission, defined by, no visible faeces found in the environment/village, and every household as well as public/community institution(s) using safe technology option for disposal of faeces. Villages and districts declare themselves open defecation free through a rigorous process of self-declaration, followed by a multi-level decentralised verification process. A district is declared ODF when all the villages of the district have been declared ODF, the minister told the Rajya Sabha in a written reply. He further said the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation had conducted National Annual Rural Sanitation Survey (NARSS) 2017-18 through an independent agency under the World Bank support project to the Swachh Bharat Mission, according to which 95.6 per cent of identified villages were confirmed to be ODF. PTI UZM UZM SNESNE