Himalayan News Service Kathmandu, April 10
With toilet operators becoming more profit-oriented, most public toilets in Kathmandu Metropolitan City are in a sorry state. Kathmandu Metropolitan City gives the responsibility of maintaining these toilets to the private sector through tender for a year. But whoever gets the tender focuses only on collecting money from people who use public toilets.
Many such persons who have been awarded the contract to maintain and operate these toilets have been using the space designated for public toilets for business purposes. Operators of public toilets seem to spend nothing on maintaining cleanliness and sanitation. Tirtharaj Rai, operator of a public toilet at Bhrikutimandap, said he had no option other than to provide the area of public toilet on rent for business purposes because he had to pay Rs 116,199 to the Social Welfare Council every month. He further informed that he could only collect Rs 50,000 from public toilet users in a month. Prakash Amatya, country representatives of Aerosan, said the public toilets of KMC lacked basic cleanliness, which not only affected public health but also contributed to environment pollution. There are five toilets near Ratnapark and Old Bus Park area. Operators of these toilets have rented the toilet area to street vendors. Deputy Mayor of KMC Hari Prabha Khadgi said the metropolitan city had been inspecting public toilets and was also planning to build more of them. “We are searching for open land to build toilets in the city,” she said, adding that whoever had taken the responsibility of operating public toilets should focus on maintaining cleanliness and sanitation.