Taking note of the high volumes of people travelling on major state and district roads, the Maharashtra Public Works Department (PWD) has come up with a policy on building public conveniences and toilet blocks on lands owned by it along such roads.
The PWD policy permits Centre-controlled Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs), private companies, private individuals, banks, financial institutions and Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) to construct public conveniences and toilet blocks on lands owned by the PWD.
The toilet blocks will be built at a distance of every 100 kilometres along the major state and district roads, a Government Resolution issued by the PWD stated.
The toilet blocks will also include stall areas run by women’s Self Help Groups (SHG) and voluntary organisations, it added.
The policy also takes note of the “Right To Pee” movement launched by women’s groups.
“Several Central PSUs, private companies, banks, financial institutions, NGOs and others have shown keen interest in constructing public conveniences and toilet blocks through their own funds along the state and district roads,” the GR stated.
The institutions so desiring to construct toilet blocks will construct five urinals each for men and women and two toilet blocks.
These institutions will also have to construct a small stall which can be given to women’s SHGs and voluntary organisations to operate.
The toilet blocks will have to adhere to all specifications like having bio-digesters, septic tanks and other facilities.
The toilet blocks will be owned by the PWD.
As per the policy guidelines, those institutions constructing the toilet blocks should ensure that these do not create any obstructions and have enough parking space.
Those constructing the toilet blocks can be contracted for a 10 year period to maintain them. If the institutions do not want to undertake the maintenance of the toilet blocks, they can construct and hand them over to the PWD, the GR stated.
Those constructing the toilet blocks will also have to provide for water connection and power supply. For supply of water and electricity, the institutions should give preference to digging of borewells and installing solar panels respectively.
As an incentive, the department shall allow the institution and its allied companies to put up advertising hoardings free of cost for a year at the site of the toilet block, the GR said.
As per the state Economic Survey for 2017-18, the total road length in the state, as of 2016-17, coming under the PWD and Zilla Parishads, is 3,03,359 kilometres.
Of this, national highways are 12,275 kilometres, major state highways are 3,861 kilometres and state highways are 30,589 kilometres.
The share of major district roads stood at 52,637 kilometres, other district roads at 58,116 kilometres and village roads at 1,45,881 kilometres.