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No more stink: Prabhu to launch first discharge free rail corridor

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NEW DELHI, INDIA - OCTOBER 5: Union Railways Minister Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu during an exclusive interview with Hindustan Times at Rail Bhawan on October 5, 2015 in New Delhi, India. Prabhu speaks on current media speculations that his performance was under watch by the Prime Minister?s Office. He said, I have been working hard and have also achieved some success. The highest-ever budgetary allocation was outlined in this year?s rail budget. A sum of 27,000 crore was spent on projects until August this year. Eighty four of the budget announcements have been implemented. (Photo by Arvind Yadav/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Activists and concerned citizens have been asking Indian Railways to end the open discharge of human waste from railway toilets on to the tracks. But there was no reply from apathetic rail ministry. But now in a bid to make railway tracks discharge free zones, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu will inaugurate 114-km long Rameswaram-Manmadurai route as the country’s first green rail corridor with zero toilet discharge section today.

To implement this ambitious plan 10 passenger trains consisting of 286 coaches moving in the section have been provided with bio-toilets enabling the rail corridor free from discharge of human waste on the track. This initiative is a part of the Swachh Bharat Mission.

Providing human waste discharge free bio-toilets in all its coaches will be a mammoth task and would be completed by September 2019.

The stopping of discharge of human waste from trains would help in improving cleanliness and hygiene besides preventing corrosion of the tracks.

A report had cited that Indian defecate mostly, beside the railway tracks. The report says that the 200,000 tonnes of human faeces deposited daily in India, a large percentage is left on or alongside railway tracks.

Railways in its commitment to provide hygienic environment to passengers and to keep station premises/tracks clean, have developed environment-friendly bio-toilets for its passenger coaches.

The technology has been developed jointly by Indian Railways and Defence Research & Development Organization (DRDO) for railway passenger coaches.

In the bio-toilet coaches, human waste is collected in tanks below the toilets and the same is decomposed by a consortium of bacteria and finally water is discharged.