ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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A Public or Private Good?

Access to Latrines

The Right to Sanitation in India: Critical Perspectives edited by Philippe Cullet, Sujith Koonan, and Lovleen Bhullar, New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2019; pp xxvii + 435, `1,295.


This collection of essays edited by Philippe Cullet, Sujith Koonan, and Lovleen Bhullar presents sanitation as a human rights priority. It raises concerns about India’s current “demand-driven” sanitation policy and argues that the “ongoing interventions seek to restrict the role of the state to that of a facilitator.” Furthermore, the book argues that such an approach takes away the responsibility of the state to build, maintain, and operate public infrastructure essential for the realisation of access to safe sanitation and hygiene, and instead, places the burden on its people.

This book has three parts. First, it analyses the right to sanitation in the domestic, international, and comparative perspectives. In addition, it offers a comprehensive account of judicial interventions, laws and statutes that have historically facilitated the realisation of the right to sanitation in India. The second part of the book comprises the current laws and policy interventions. It highlights the environmental dimension of sanitation, analyses the policy framework that governs the existing sanitation interventions, and critically scrutinises the potential and influence of community-led total sanitation (CLTS)—a celebrated behaviour change strategy to promote latrine use. Finally, in the third part, the book discusses the struggle and rights of sanitation workers.

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Updated On : 9th Mar, 2020


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