The Case of Hygiene in Washrooms


Washrooms, although may not have the privilege of making the first impression, nevertheless, often leave the lasting impressions on the guests. It must offer you that perfect private space for relief and relaxation. But if the washrooms, especially the public washrooms, are not complemented by spic and span appliances and high quality washing agents, their whole purpose get defeated, as then the washroom usage may make the users susceptible to the influence of harmful germs. However, sadly in India, washrooms are generally well maintained only in star rated hotels, sleek restaurants and high-ends hospitals, and somewhat well maintained at homes. The state of public toilets in many of the government hospitals, and many of the offices and restaurants and other public places is dirty and deplorable, to say the least.
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Poor sanitation habits and non-availability of hygienic washrooms has caused numerous deaths in the developing countries. How can India exclude itself from this list? Of the 6 billion people in the world, 1.1 billion still defecate in the open, which is considered to be among the most dangerous and unhygienic practices with regards to sanitation. It should here to noted that of these 1.1 billion people, two thirds live in the countries of South Asia. Two recent studies in Kenya and India found that less than two percent of school children in these countries wash their hands with soap. According to a new report of WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation, the world is gearing itself well to meet the water target of Millennium Development Goals (MDG), but it is far away from reaching the sanitation goals. According to the report, 39 percent of the world’s population, that is 2.6 billion, has no access to proper sanitation facilities. Especially for multitudes of women, the lack of proper sanitation facilities in conservative societies feminine hygiene services like India, often compel them to relieve themselves only in the darkness or in the early hours of dawn, thereby compounding their inconvenience. In India, the state of feminine hygiene is simply deplorable, which needs urgent attention. According to Rakesh Lal, Director Classic Maintenance Services., a major producer of eco-friendly cleaning products, “simply provision of adequate sanitation infrastructure and facilities would not solve the problem. The environmental factor needs to be taken into account to. In the wake of rising scarcity of natural resources, the use of water and toilet paper in the washrooms has also come under the scanner.” Application of the latest technology to provide adequate sanitation facilities for all and sundry without unduly compromising on the scarce natural resources like trees and water is another challenge that the developing countries need to take head on.