FOCUS CITIES

Trichy

Since 2010, Trichy has been ranked among the top sanitised cities in India with the efforts of the municipal cooperation, NGOs, Women’s Self-Help Groups (SHGs) and other stakeholders. It claimed the sixth spot amongst Indian cities in the Government of India’s Swachhta Survey in 2015-16.

Trichy is a major tier II city in Tamil Nadu, which is covered by a sewerage system in parts. To achieve 100% sanitation, it needs sustainable septage management solutions. This is why Trichy was chosen to be a model demonstration city. The project will then scale up state-wide to other city corporations, based on the success of innovations in Trichy.

Focus on the full cycle of storage, collection, transport, treatment and safe end-use or disposal of toilet contents, will complement Trichy’s existing sewage treatment facilities and rapidly move the city towards 100% sanitation. Some of the principles of the programme are:

Getting Trichy on a path to achieving safely managed sanitation for all by 2030 (SDG Goal 6)

  • Focus on sanitation as utility service than infrastructure development
  • Make sure everybody benefits from safe, sustained, equitable sanitation services.

Our Work

TNUSSP wants to skill all stakeholders involved in the sanitation cycle and provide research-based solutions to achieve 100% sanitation. We have prepared a City Sanitation Plan for the Trichy City Corporation addressing health and environmental outcomes of sanitation services.

Access:

TNUSSP has renewed traction for the NGO-based pay-and-use model of community toilets in Trichy through an organised network of SHGs called the Women’s Action for Village Empowerment (WAVE) federation. This has added over 100 additional toilets to the model. We are preparing a sustainable improvement plan based on our study to assess the status of the existing public toilets.

Containment

We trained 71 masons on how to design and construct septic tanks and twin pits properly to avoid exfiltration and leakages. Based on our study of the Uyyakondan irrigation canal pollution, we are working on options for grey/black water management. Apartments, schools, restaurants and hospitals create fecal waste in bulk. We will study the role of various stakeholders and develop a strategy to serve their sanitation needs.

Collection

Based on our study of the 30 active private desludging operators in the city, we learned that the vehicles are not fitted with a tracking device though mandated by the city corporation. Our decanting station survey pointed out deficiencies in the record-keeping process at two decanting facilities. We also found practices to reduce risk and exposure must be adopted to ensure that workers dealing with fecal waste are safe. Unlike solid waste management, Trichy corporation does not hold awareness drives about safe sanitation and prevention of manual scavenging. In addition, forty desludging operators and workers were trained on safe sanitation and the importance of their role in the sanitation cycle.

Treatment

We conducted a study to assess the effectiveness of the existing treatment plant at Panjappur and analyse the implications of the proposed development plan. Our assessment of decanting stations is the basis for scaling-up of fecal waste-sewage co-treatment plants to 35 other ULBs in Tamil Nadu.

About Trichy

Tiruchirapalli (Trichy) is the fourth largest municipal corporation in Tamil Nadu. Situated in the centre of the state, on the banks of the Cauvery River, Trichy is well-connected by rail and road network.
The underground drainage network is being implemented in three phases in Trichy. Phase I will cover 49,306 house service connections. Since network extensions under Phases II and III are expected to take longer, certain parts of the city will continue to depend on on-site sanitation systems like septic tanks and pit latrines. Currently, some of the septic tank contents are being co-treated with sewage at the city’s waste stabilisation pond.

The underground drainage network is being implemented in three phases in Trichy. Phase I will cover 49,306 house service connections. Since network extensions under Phases II and III are expected to take longer, certain parts of the city will continue to depend on on-site sanitation systems like septic tanks and pit latrines. Currently, some of the septic tank contents are being co-treated with sewage at the city’s waste stabilisation pond.

Tiruchirappalli City

Governing bodyTiruchirappalli City Corporation (TCC)
Area146.90 sq.km
Population9.16 lakhs (Census 2011)
Administrative zonesSrirangam, Ariyamangalam, Golden Rock and Abhishekapuram
Number of wards65
Iconic PlacesSrirangam temple, Rock fort, Kallanai dam

Household data from Census 2011

Number of households6.96 lakhs
Access to individual toilets81%
Access to piped sewer system45%
Connected to septic tanks28%
Connected to pit with slab3%
No access to household toilet19%
Uses community toilets14%
Practices open defecation5%

Coimbatore

TNUSSP has chosen two model demonstration towns in Coimbatore district, Tamil Nadu—Periyanaicken-Palayam (PNP) and Narasimhanaicken-Palayam (NNP). PNP town is located to the north of Coimbatore city along National Highway 67 going towards Mettupalayam. NNP town is situated 5 km ahead on the same road.

PNP and NNP town panchayats were chosen due to their administrative setup and also because both towns are non-sewered. This provides us the scope to implement Full Sludge and Septage Management (FSSM) as an economical and effective means to achieve total sanitation. This could also be the basis for scaling-up state-wide in other town panchayats.

Households here are mostly dependent on on-site sanitation systems with 67 percent (in PNP) and 71 percent (in NNP) households connected to septic tanks. These tanks are currently being emptied on demand by private de-sludging operators. These two towns have a total of 25 public toilets, two of which are defunct at present.

We focus on skilling people who work across the sanitation system and providing research-based solutions specific to Fecal Sludge Management.

Progress of sanitation work under TNUSSP is reviewed monthly. Two Working Groups, one for each town panchayat headed by the chairperson of their council, have been formed for this purpose. Other members of the groups are key government officers and, private sector and civil society representatives. The Working Group is also guided by an Advisory Committee headed by the Collector (Coimbatore) for smooth coordination and implementation.

Our Work

Access

We carried out an assessment of the existing public toilets, along with a user experience survey. Based on the analysis, an improvement plan for toilets is being drawn up with the town panchayats. In support of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban), the Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach has been adopted in slum wards with the maximum number of households without toilets. We have provided the town panchayats with guide books on how to properly construct sanitary toilets as specified under the mission.

Containment

Fifty eight masons were trained to construct proper septic tanks and twin pits that do not leak. We also followed up with them to understand how they were applying their newly acquired skills. Lack of awareness about proper septic tanks among house owners was found to be the main hindrance to masons. We also conducted a study to assess and identify contributors to storm water drain pollution. It looked into developing solutions to address this pollution through decentralised liquid waste management interventions.

Collection

We trained 28 desludging operators who learnt the difference between current practices and best practices as per the operative guidelines. At present, all de-sludging operators are registered with the Coimbatore City Corporation. Efforts are on to register them in the town panchayats as well. Another study we completed was on personal protective equipment and safe occupational practices for sanitary workers. In an effort to improve preventive health care, we also organised three health camps in Periyanaicken Palayam for 178 sanitation workers and 118 family members.

A treatment plant (capacity: 25 Kilo Litres per Day) has been constructed on town panchayat land in Periyanaicken Palayam to cater to the needs of both towns. An environmental baseline study was carried out in the treatment plants to perform a voluntary impact assessment.